The Hack That Helps Me Sleep Better and Combat Anxiety

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About two months ago, I returned to work full time after becoming a parent. Even though I work from home, the transition has been challenging. Getting back into a rhythm of work plus finding the right childcare, continuing to physically heal and get my strength back, navigating the world of baby development, maintaining friendships, investing in my marriage, continuing to work to find community in our new city, and growing my freelance business can leave me in a spiral of anxiety.  

It’s a lot and I sometimes feel like there’s more for me to manage than can fit in my brain at any given time. Sound familiar?

For a few weeks I had a hard time going back to sleep after feeding my daughter in the middle of the night. It was like my mind thought it needed to stay awake to process life changes and solve problems when I really just needed to sleep. 

The Hack That Helps Me Sleep Better and Combat Anxiety

Recently I got back into a habit that has really helped me reset my mind before going to bed. This helps me all through the night. I take about three minutes before turning the lights out to jot down the highlights of my day in a little notebook I’ve oh so originally dubbed my “highlights journal.” This does a few things:

  1. It forces me to identify a win from the day. Some days are just hard. Or tiring. Or both! Rather than letting my final thoughts before bed be about how I failed or what frustrated me, I consciously choose to find and focus on a positive moment from the day. 

  2. It improves my mood. Thinking about my two to three favorite moments of the day—whether it’s my baby’s new trick, a delicious meal, or a great conversation with a client— is an automatic mood booster. 

  3. It keeps me present. As a futuristic thinker, I’m prone to think 6 steps ahead but taking a moment to reflect on the day and write down the highlights reminds me how good this moment is and to to savor it.

So if you’re like me and you find yourself awake at night trying to mentally spin half a dozen plates, give the highlights journal hack a try. 

Back to Work After Maternity Leave

Photo by hannah foster

Photo by hannah foster

If you’re a blog reader but don’t follow along with my journey on social media or my podcast, you may be surprised to know that I’ve been rather silent on the blog the past five months because I had a baby in October. It has been a wonderful whirlwind and slowly but surely I’m picking back up the outlets and commitments that I had prior to becoming a mom.

I’m excited to share that very shortly the Hustle & Grace podcast will be back with all new episodes. I’ve already recorded several episodes including one with an enneagram expert. The conversations I’ve gotten to have thus far have been fascinating.

Becoming a mother—and a working, writing, entrepreneur mom at that—has given me much more to write about than I’ve had time but I have tried to jot down my observations over on Instagram when I’ve been able to. You can catch up a bit on my motherhood journey there.

Here’s my first post after Eloise was born.

Here are reflections on the first month of parenthood.

This is my word for 2019.

These are some thoughts on getting back into the groove of work.

This is a short poem I wrote on growing up.

And this is a few observations I made after being back at work 6 weeks.

I look forward to sharing more with you soon.