Lifestyle Changes for a Peaceful Mind and Body

By: Loolwa Khazzoom, Founder, Dancing with Pain

November 3rd, 2009 • Mind-Body MedicinePrint Print

Kitchen Mess 2I have been in overdrive for the past couple of weeks, and my apartment has reflected my state of mind –dishes crawling up and down my walls, clothing strewn every which way on the floor, and everything otherwise in a state of disarray.

I haven’t been sleeping well, I’ve been tempted again to eat mindlessly (after having kicked the habit last year and lost 25 pounds as a result since then), and I have no social life to speak of at the moment.

In other words, my life is out of balance.

laundry messOn the one hand, I think it comes with the territory of being a freelancer. Opportunities come my way, or the creative muse is in full gear, and I run with it, full steam ahead. I am determined to figure out how to temper that critical go-with-the-flow impetus, however, with a more even-handed approach to minding the basics in my life.

So I am putting it out into the universe that I want to make two changes: No computer for at least half an hour before I go to sleep, and for at least half an hour after I wake up. Because while I don’t have a Crackberry, and I refuse to succumb to cell phone madness that takes the action addict pattern to a stratospheric level, I am on the computer till all hours of the night, working till I drop, and I’m at it again as soon as my eyes open in the morning.

Before that, actually. As soon as my brain starts chugging into gear, I’m already spinning through everything I have to get done that day. in fact, I wake up panicked, feeling behind it all.

desk mess 2I put this new habit into effect last night. I also got into bed by 12:00 am and off the phone by 12:30 am, which is, like, unthinkable, and I read a bedtime meditation before closing my eyes. Lo and behold, I went from feeling frazzled and crispy-fried last night, to feeling fresh, perky, and upbeat this morning.

I believe in baby steps. Once I get the half-hour-before and half-hour-after rule into effect, I want to commit to an earlier bedtime (like, before 1:00 am – I’m generally up until 2:00 or 3:00), then expand that half hour rule into an hour rule, then insert bedtime meditation practice and morning exercise into the mix.

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