RLS #3: Solid Foundation

RLS #3: Solid Foundation

Following real life skills #1 (Mindset: Life is messy) and #2 (Experience your emotions and feelings), we’ll move on to a third real life skill.

Real Life Skill #3: Set yourself up for success with a solid foundation.

Let’s start with the basics: what we eat and drink, fitting in some exercise, and getting some sleep.

Junk food = junk mood. You are what you eat. Self-care is important. And there are plenty more related sayings/messages. While they may seem trite (I feel you!), it IS hard to show up when you feel crappy.

It’s hard to think clearly when you have a headache or your joints ache. It’s hard to see beyond painful acne or an itchy rash. It’s hard to respond, rather than snappishly react, when keeping your eyes open is about all you can manage in the moment. And when we’re coming from the place of reacting and fuzzy thinking? We’re more likely to make decisions that don’t serve us as well.

One thing we can do to help set ourselves up for success? Set up a strong foundation for what we eat (go for as much real, unprocessed food as possible), what we drink (swap in more water), fitting in some consistent exercise (whatever personally feels good), and getting some quality sleep (as much as possible each night).

When we start off the day feeling more rested and well, it’s easier to think clearly and make decisions that serve us. And this goes for our teens (and everyone else!) as well.

Real Life Skill #3: Set yourself up for success with a solid foundation.

Regarding applying this skill, modeling is a go-to here as well.

How can you best care for yourself — and in doing so, demonstrate to your teen what self-care can look like? If you want to make some changes on how you eat, drink, exercise, or sleep, aim for baby steps to upgrade from where you’re currently at. And verbally share with your teen along the way.

It may seem like your teen isn’t listening — I know I wanted to do it “my way” for years and years (as I’d bet many of us do). However, once I started to see that treating my body like a garbage dump resulted in feeling terrible all of the time (and spent years struggling with depression, eating disorders, and other stuff), I started to wonder if there was another way — what I was doing wasn’t helping. As I started to look around me, I noticed those who were feeling healthy and well and took note of their self-care practices. Role models were key — it helped show what was possible and gave me some ideas to try — when I was ready to try something different.

Also note that self-care for your teen may look different than for you or another. And that’s okay. What is important is that it’s helpful — to the individual — in a way that helps them sustainably feel healthy and well, supporting them in showing up in their life with an open heart and mind.

For some ideas and additional food for thought on setting a solid foundation, check out the following posts:

Strong Foundation: Bonus from Nope, You’re Not Crazy
Better Than Popping a Pill?

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