10 Blog Posts for Finding Calm Through COVID-19

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

If the Rona and all that’s come with it (like staying home, worrying about loved ones, trying to be a teacher, etc.) has you feeling stressed and overwhelmed, I get it! So I’m sharing some of my blog posts (older and newer) that will help you overcome your overwhelm and find calm in the chaos:

  1. Guided Meditation for Anxiety and Overwhelm
  2. 4 Breathing Techniques for Calm
  3. Everything Is Working Out! A Guided Meditation
  4. 4 Ways to Clear Energy That’s Not Serving You
  5. How to Start A Home Yoga Practice: 5 Things to Do
  6. Finding Your Calm During Life’s Challenges
  7. 10 Affirmations for Your Root Chakra
  8. 8 Spiritual Practices That Keep Me Grounded
  9. 3 Types of Yoga to Try
  10. This, Too, Shall Pass: 18 Quotes and Affirmations for the Rough Times

 

If you find this useful, please share the link to this blog post with your people!

Do you have questions related to finding your calm? Reach out to me here; I’m here for you, sis. 💙

 

On Protecting Your Peace

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

Now, more than ever, it’s important to create — or maintain — practices that allow you to protect your peace. Although I know how to find my calm when I feel overwhelmed or frustrated most of the time, I have to admit: Lately, it’s been somewhat of a challenge. I’m determining what works best for my business now, figuring out what my work-from-home situation will be with my 9-5, being a mama/teacher and just trying to process everything happening. It’s been a lot. So I’ve had to be more intentional about maintaining and protecting my peace. Here are some things I’ve been doing:

Starting my mornings peacefully.

Because everything has been so different, my usual routine had fallen off a few times (which is understandable). However, I know how important it is for me to set the tone for my day, and having a morning routine helps me maintain my peace or find it when life throws me curve balls. To start your mornings on a peaceful and positive note, create a practice you can do in (at minimum) 5 or 10 minutes, preferably in a quiet and distraction-free space. Some ideas to get you started: meditation or deep breathing, yoga, gratitude journaling, say/write affirmations, visualize, read something inspirational.

Taking social media breaks.

It can be tempting to scroll on Facebook and Instagram all day if you have more free time in the house. While I don’t think there’s anything wrong with spending time on social media (because I do), too much time can cause you to feel anxious, overwhelmed and even depressed with all of the not-so-great news or even comparing yourself to other people. To protect your peace, you can:

  • Take a break for half a day, a whole day, a weekend or a week (or several).
  • Choose how much time you’ll spend on social media per day. 
  • Place your phone across the room or in another room so you won’t be tempted to pick it up just because.
  • Use an app to restrict your usage.

Don’t consume so much news.

Since the info surrounding COVID-19 changes multiple times a day, you may want to stay informed about what’s going on which I totally get. However, think about how much news you really need and limit how much you consume so that it doesn’t amplify any stress or fears you have.

Chat with a friend.

Since many of us are distancing ourselves and may have family that’s driving us crazy (hey, I’m just keeping it real), reach out to a friend to say, ‘Hey’ and catch up as you support each other through this.

Ground yourself.

In these uncertain times, there are moments when I feel ungrounded and all over the place, and my energy has been off. When this happens, I take a minute (or several) to ground myself. Some of the things I do:

  • Stop what I’m doing, relax my body, close my eyes and take a few deep breaths.
  • Do some yoga (practicing mountain pose in particular).
  • Take in my surroundings with my senses.
  • Slow down and focus on the task I’m doing

Practice self-care.

These days, I’ve been listening to my body and intuition and giving myself a lot of down time when I feel it’s necessary. I’ve been doing a lot of reading, watching Netflix, playing with Nailah, listening to music and older episodes of The Read podcast. Do whatever you need to to take care of your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being and do things that bring you joy (and make you laugh) often.

Flow and embrace what is.

I’m naturally someone who likes to be in control, but one thing that I’ve truly come to understand is that there are so many things I can’t control. So I’ve been making more of an effort to go with the flow of whatever is happening, doing my best to accept what is and being in the moment. One mantra I use to help with this is, “I surrender and let Spirit do her thing.”

Give yourself (and others) grace.

There are times when I have good intentions about crossing things off my intentions (to-do) list, and when I’m not able to get it done, I might beat myself up about it or feel bad because I’m not being “productive enough.” I have to remind myself that I’m only human and that sometimes, life just gets in the way. Plus, things are different at the moment, so I have to be extra gentle and compassionate with myself now.

One final note: It may not be possible for you to feel 100% peaceful and positive all the time (I don’t either), but it is possible to feel a little bit better and a little more calm than you did before your practices.

Allow yourself to feel your feelings then move to one that feels better. Do your best to maintain your peace, focus on the good and take it one day at a time. We got this. 💙

 

4 Breathing Techniques for Calm

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

Breathing is one of my favorite ways to find calm when I feel overwhelmed, anxious or frustrated. And best of all, you can do this whenever you need to, no matter where you are, and you can practice multiple times a day. In this post, I’m sharing five breathing techniques you can use to tap into your inner peace. But before I do, here are a few tips:

 

  • If possible, get somewhere that’s quiet and distraction-free.
  • These can be done with your eyes opened or closed (but obviously, if your eyes are going to be closed, don’t drive or operate heavy machinery or anything like that). Sit up with your spine straight.
  • You can also listen to some music to help you focus better. Search for meditation music or relaxation music on YouTube, Google Play, etc.
  • You can practice the techniques until you feel more relaxed.
  • Be gentle with yourself and remember, it’s a practice.

1. Deep/belly breathing. (This is actually the way you’re supposed to breathe, so it’s good to practice regularly).

  • Sit tall with a straight spine and relax your shoulders.
  • Inhale fully and deeply through your nose allowing your belly to fill with air like a balloon.
  • Exhale completely through your nose, allowing your belly button to go towards your spine.
  • Repeat 5 to 10 times or until you feel calmer.

2. Equal Breathing

  • Use the same breathing technique as above.
  • Count to 4 as you inhale, then count to 4 as you exhale.
  • Repeat a few times or until you feel more relaxed.

3. 4-7-8 breathing (This is a great technique to use if you have trouble falling asleep).

  • Inhale fully and deeply (fill your belly with air) through your nose as you count to 4.
  • Hold the breath for a count of 7.
  • Exhale fully and deeply (allowing your navel to go towards your spine) as you count to 8.
  • Repeat 5 to 10 times or until you’re more peaceful (or asleep).

4. Relaxation Response.

  • As you sit, start your from the top of your head and scan your body, releasing any tension you might be holding on to.
  • Inhale through your nose, focusing on your breath.
  • Exhale and say a word to yourself like breathe, relax, calm or peace.
  • Continue for 2 minutes or until you feel calmer.

 

Get the products you need to find the inner peace you deserve! Shop your calm at BlackMomCalmShop.com today.

How to Take Care of Your Mental Health in Stressful Times

We’re dealing with some stressful and overwhelming times at the moment. In this video, I’m sharing 10 ways you can take care of your mental health and find calm in this chaos. Plus, I do a brief guided meditation.

Just to give you a quick overview, the ways are:

  1. Practice mindfulness (live in the moment).
  2. Practice self-care.
  3. Use affirmations.
  4. Take a digital break.
  5. Develop a (loose) routine.
  6. Journal.
  7. Go with the flow.
  8. Be gentle with yourself.
  9. Allow your best to be good enough.
  10. Breathe/meditate.

For products to help you find and maintain your calm, visit the Black Mom Calm Shop.

How to Stay Calm During COVID-19 Crisis

If you’re someone who already deals with anxiety and overwhelm regularly, then the recent news of COVID-19 might have you stressing and freaking out.  I know it may be challenging, but it’s important to stay calm and at peace for your own mental/emotional/physical well-being.

With that said, here are some ways to stay calm (by the way, these are techniques that’ll work for your child(ren) too!):

Breathe.

Taking deep breaths is the simplest, most effective way to tap into your inner peace. As you go throughout your days (and especially when you feel stressed), be aware of how you’re breathing (is it shallow from your chest or deep from your belly?), and if you’re not already, take a few deep breaths. Here’s how:

  • Inhale fully and deeply through your nose, filling your belly with air like a balloon as you count to 5.
  • Exhale deeply through your nose, counting to 5, allowing your belly button to go back towards your spine.
  • Repeat 5 to 10 times or until you feel calmer.

Meditate.

Meditating on a regular basis — even if it’s just 5 or 10 minutes a day — assists greatly in staying calm and centered. A few tips for a simple meditation.

  • Find a quiet, distraction-free space (if possible).
  • Sit comfortably in traditional meditation style, in a chair with your feet flat on the floor or kneel.
  • Sit with a straight spine, close your eyes, and bring your palms to face up or down on your legs.
  • Breathe fully and deeply (see above), allowing your body and mind to relax. When thoughts come to you, let them float on by then bring your awareness back to your breathing and the present moment.
  • Use a timer, app or videos on YouTube if needed.

Practice self-care.

While I don’t think we should be panicking about the virus, I do think it’s important to take necessary precautions and take care of ourselves. This includes:

  • Listening to your body.
  • Protecting your peace and energy.
  • Getting the rest you need.
  • Seeing a physician if you need to.
  • Eating well.
  • Staying hydrated.
  • Listening to medical professionals.

Focus on the good/practice gratitude.

When much of the world is freaking out and (intentionally or not) creating a sense of fear, it’s easy for us to internalize these messages and let them affect our thoughts and what we focus on. What you give your attention to expands. So, to feel more peace and joy right now, do your best to find the positive in all situations. Focus on the big and little things that bring you joy, and notice the things you have to be grateful for in this moment.

Take a break from social media/the news.

Spending too much time scrolling through social media and watching the news can cause you to feel more anxious, overwhelmed and fearful. If you want more calm, take some time away from all the noise. Take a media break for a few hours, a weekend or a week, and/or consider limiting the amount of time you spend on it daily.

Focus on what you can control. 

Fretting about what you can’t control does nothing to benefit you and only increases your stress levels (which can also suppress your immune system). Instead of worrying about what might happen or what could happen, breathe, allow yourself to be in the moment, focus on what you can do and trust that Spirit’s got you.

Want to learn more about ways to find your calm? Download your copy of the ‘The Black Girl’s Guide to Calm book!

4 Ways to Love Yourself and Find Your Calm

Learning how to find your calm is a great act of self-love. Why? Because it means you’re taking care of you!

In this video, I share 4 ideas for finding and maintaining your calm as an act of loving yourself. Get into it, and let me know what you think.

Calm Mama: Omaria Tucker

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

Omaria is a mom of 2,  founder of SoulScribe Omaria and a Creative Soulpreneur who provides crystals and mantras to entrepreneurs and professional overthinkers to help them look good and feel good at the same time. Additionally, she’s a certified numerologist and reiki master.

Here’s what she had to say about learning to find her calm:

Q: What are some of your stressors and/or mental health challenges you deal with?

A: Stressors and mental health concerns that I have faced are internalizing others’ reactions towards me and my response to situations. At times, I find myself having anxiety based on the perceptions of others. Another stressor that I deal with is trying to be the right person that others nee, while also struggling to be that person to myself. Some people may call it the strong woman dis-ease, where we bypass our needs to ensure others are taken care of first.

Q: How did you cope with stressful situations before you started using calming practices?

A: Before I started using calming practices, I did not cope well at all. I think the main (thing) was my alcohol intake increased to help me numb away the hurt and pain of feeling neglected.

Q: What are your top ways/favorite tools and practices for de-stressing and finding calm?

A: Currently, my top two ways two de-stress are handcrafting gemstone jewelry and doing my chanting practices.

As an over thinker, I had to find ways to “turn off” my brain from other situations that I could not physically change in the moment in order to help me come to the solutions I needed. They are types of meditations that I use to relieve my mind.

Q: What differences have you seen in yourself and your life (and children’s lives if applicable) since using calming practices?

A: Since using these calming practices, I have noticed that I am much more calmer in high stress situations. I also am better at not taking things personally when others don’t receive my truth. It has helped me to be silent and listen to what is being said and gauge my responses in a way to ensure that I am not flying off the handle in reaction mode; however, just letting things be as they may, especially if others are not able to see my point of view in situations.

Setting boundaries and knowing your triggers are very important when we are discussing how to find your own place of calm and peace in your life. The words “NO,” or, “I’m not going to be able to do this” without feeling the need to explain why are a godsend. It’s okay if you can’t do something and that you take care of yourself first. If it’s not an emergency, then it can wait until you [I] am in a place to focus and contribute without dis-honoring myself at the same time.

Like my mom says, “Poor planning on your part, does not constitute an emergency on my part.”

Connect with Omaria on her site: airamosoul.com.

Top 5 Lessons I Learned in 2019

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

  1. I am enough and so worthy. I realized that there’d been many experiences in my life that caused me to feel unworthy and not good enough (religion and divorce to name a couple), and I’d often act in a way I thought I “should” or not speak my truth to try to prove myself and my worth to others. Although I still have to remind myself of this, I now know that I’m inherently worthy and enough, simply because I’m here and I’m a child of the Divine.
  2. I will get to the other side; this, too, shall pass. When you’re in the middle of a stressful situation, it can feel like it’s never going to end. But even when you think it’s taking a long time (too long), things will eventually improve, and you’ll move through whatever life circumstances you might currently be in. Things will get better.
  3. You can make a different choice. A lot of times, we feel like we have to always be the person who everybody knows us to be and do the things that we’re known to do — because that’s “who we are” or what we “should” do. One thing I realized this year is that if I want to be different/want my life to be different, I can literally just make a decision to do something else, and that’s okay (and often necessary)! I have the right to choose who and what I become.
  4. Self-compassion is necessary. I have the tendency to beat myself up about my failures, disappointments and mistakes. This year, I’ve learned to be compassionate with myself, give myself grace and allow my best to be good enough. I’m going to make mistakes and fvck up sometimes, but I have to be gentle with myself and take life a day at a time.
  5. Be at peace with where you are. Of course, I set intentions and create goals for my future, but life only happens in the present moment. And if you want to have peace, joy and contentment in your daily life, I believe you have to have some level of peace with where you are in this moment as you pursue/manifest your intentions and goals. Breathe, practice gratitude, be where you are joyfully while you go forward.

What lessons did you learn in 2019? Leave a comment below to let me know or send me an email.

5 Ways to Take Care of Yourself Physically

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

September is Self-Care Awareness Month! Each week, I’ll be sharing tips that will help you take better care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

Here are a few ways to practice physical self-care:

  1. Move your body. My favorite way to do this is yoga, of course, but some other ideas are walking a few days a week, hitting the gym or using workout videos on YouTube (a couple I really enjoy: Blogilates and HangTightwMarcie.
  2. Stay hydrated. Drinking enough water keeps your blood pressure regulated; it also keeps your skin moisturized and boosts your mood, concentration and energy levels.
  3. Get enough sleep. I know it’s often easier said than done, but try to get at least 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night. This allows you to be (and feel) well rested, more productive, improves your mood and concentration, plus lowers your risk of serious health issues like heart disease and stroke.
  4. Eat more healthful foods. Incorporate more fruits and veggies, whole grains and limit your salt and sugar intake.
  5. Take breaks more often. Trust me, I get it: You’re busy, and you have a lot going on. However, if you don’t take time for breaks, your body will decide to do so for you: You’ll get sick or experience burn out. So make time for at least 5 to 15 minutes a day to just breathe and be.

Using Crystals to Find Your Calm

Black Mom's Guide to Calm

“[Crystal healing is] a wonderful tool for finding your own spiritual, mental, and emotional empowerment so that you, too, can lead a life that truly invigorates you and brings you joy.”– Karen Frazier

Used for healing purposes for thousands of years, crystals each have their own individual energetic properties that can help you mentally, emotionally, spiritually and even physically.

I first learned about crystals at my friend, Trelani’s writing retreat back in 2016. Since then, I’ve become kind of obsessed with loved them! If you know me IRL or seen pics on social media, you know I wear a stack of crystal bracelets, and you might have seen me mention that I carry them in my bra and purse/bag. I also use crystals often when I meditate and when I’m doing some visualization.

So How Do They Work?

If you’ve studied the Law of Attraction, you know that everything has energy and vibrates at a certain level. Our vibrations can differ daily (or even hourly) depending on factors like our moods, emotions, circumstances, etc. Generally speaking, when we vibrate at a lower frequency, we often get to not-so-great situations where things seem to just keep getting worse. However, higher vibes help us create more positive changes.

Crystals, on the other hand, vibrate at a consistent level, and because of how they’re structured, most of them “vibrate at relatively high levels.” So, using crystals can help us vibrate at a higher frequency, so to speak, lifting our moods, focusing our minds, and manifesting what we want.

Crystals for Calm

There are crystals for just about every issue you can think of, and these are just a few that will help you overcome your overwhelm, stress less and find calm:

Amethyst helps relieve stress, protects against negative energy, helps provide restful sleep, encourages spiritual growth and helps you tap into your intuition.

Howlite calms and soothes, relieves stress and anxiety, assists with meditation, balances your chakras and teaches patience.

Smoky Quartz absorbs negative energy while increasing positive energy, helps ground you and allows you to feel more balanced and centered.

Clear Quartz is known as the master healer, assisting with all types of healing; it increases energies, provides protection and holds your intentions.

Selenite cleanses and purifies your energy, provides protection from negative energy, assists in balancing your emotions and helps you connect to the Divine.

Rose Quartz strengthens all types love, promotes joy and emotional healing, instills calm and peace and helps raise self-esteem.

Ways to Use Crystals Include

  • Wearing jewelry like bracelets, necklaces, earrings.
  • Keeping them in your pocket, bra or purse .
  • Placing them in various areas of your home and/or work space.
  • Using them to enhance your spiritual/mediation/visualization practices.

Check out the Crystals for Calm Bundle in the Black Mom Calm Shop!