EVERYTHING you need to know about letting go after a hard shift.
There’s nothing like ending a twelve hour shift that feels like twelve days, instead of hours. You take it all home with you, eat food that makes you feel like crap, yell at your boyfriend or roommate and slam your door to sulk in silence. We would like to think taking a bath or having a glass of wine would help, or wine while taking a bath, but we all know those days happen that nothing can shake off. So what do you do?
I don’t claim to have it all figured out but I have added a couple tools to my tool belt over the years that have helped me immensely and I’m sharing them with you today!
I am a strong believer in meditation and this cord cutting meditation by Gabby Bernstein is one of the most powerful I have ever done. We would all benefit from doing it more and releasing the energetic connections we feel to others.
2. Journal Journal Journal
I am a firm believer that when we suppress things that don’t serve us we are the ones that end up being harmed. Journaling is an amazing way to get things out of our head and heart and to let go. I understand it can be hard to free write, at least for me it is, so here are some prompts to get you started:
I am really proud of myself for…
What could I have done differently and how can I set myself up for success in the future?
The thing that feels really challenging right now is…
I can support myself in this by…
Write a letter to yourself like you’re writing to your best friend. What would she need to hear? What would you tell her to encourage her?
3. Move Yo’ Body
I understand the last thing you want to do after a twelve, actually let’s be honest, 14 hour shift is go to the gym and work out, especially if you’re back the next day. However, emotions are pent up energy and you may need to get them out. Again this isn’t for everyone, however, I would encourage you if you can’t go for a run, sweat it out on the stair stepper or punch a punching bag do some jumping jacks in your room or even ten squats, you could also walk around the block. I bounce on my trampoline. Whatever it is get that energy out! It’s crazy how even a couple minutes of movement will help you feel more free.
A daily action you can take is to associate a physical act with a mental trigger.
For example, when you swipe your badge at the end of the shift you can repeat something in your mind like, “I am proud of the work I did today.” When you pull out of the parking garage and the gate goes up and you pull forward you can say something like, “I leave behind feelings that don’t serve me.” Whatever you want to say or feel is up to you, just being mindful and using these mantras will help.
One thing I’ve learned is that if we set our intentions ahead of time and focus on how we want our day and shift to go instead of seeing what happens our chances of having a successful day is greatly improved.
The Five Minute Journal was what I started with or even something as simple as listening to a motivational video on your commute in. The littlest action can have the most powerful shift in setting your mind right.