It’s January, so that means the masses are frantically setting goals that aren’t attainable, making masochistic resolutions,
setting themselves up for failure, and trying to be healthier and happier by changing their lives in expensive and impractical ways. Oh, just kidding. But you know, new year, new you, amiright?
And I have a challenge for you. I’m not going to challenge to you change your diet, or start going to the gym more often, or stop swearing, or even take up a meditation practice (cough, you should totally do that one). I’m challenging you to do one simple thing: every day, for at least five minutes, put your legs up the wall.
Does that sound ridiculous? Oh, my friends, it’s SO yummy. You’re going to love it. So why would you put your legs up the wall? Well, for those of you yogis out there, you already know that legs up the wall is a yin yoga pose (a pose that is considered passive and held for a longer period of time) that is restorative for your body. In fact, putting your legs up the wall has some serious health benefits.
- Improves and regulates blood flow
- Has anti-aging benefits
- Provides relief for swollen ankles and feet
- Helps with digestion
- Alleviates menstrual cramps (I can testify to that!)
- Elicits calm
- Can benefit people with arthritis and blood pressure problems
- Boosts energy
- Provides headache relief
And also? It’s just so, so relaxing. So a few months ago I was at a yoga class with one of my good friends. Our teacher had us do legs up the wall, and I was like, “Oh, I love legs up the wall! Why don’t I do it all the time at home? I should do it every day. I’m going to do it every day starting now.”
And did I? Hell, no. I totally forgot. And then my friend and I were talking about it (potentially at another yoga class) a few weeks later, and I said, “Remember when I said I was going to do legs up the wall every day and then totally didn’t? Yeah.”
But this time I was determined. I did legs up the wall the next day, and the day after that. I’ve been doing it every day for close to a month, and I LOVE it. Sometimes my friend and I take pictures of our legs up the wall and send it to each other with the message: “Put your legs up the wall!” I actually love the idea of having a good friend doing legs up the wall at the same time I am.
Sometimes I put on a face mask and lie on the ground with my legs up the wall in my pajamas. I always do it at end of the day, after my kids are in bed, even though part of me doesn’t want to take the time and thinks I had better run downstairs to start “couch time” (ie one Netflix show with my husband if we don’t fall asleep halfway through) immediately. But I don’t. I lie down on the floor, and I put my damn legs up the wall. The dishes can wait. Black Mirror (OMG you guys need to watch it) can wait. It can all wait.
So here’s why I want YOU guys to make a resolution to put your legs up the wall for 5-15 minutes every day:
- The aforementioned health benefits
- It’s an easy way to find a few minutes of YOU time every day
- You deserve a sacred ritual at bedtime
- It reminds you to focus on your body, your health, and your spirit
- Once a day, you should remember to get into your body, get quiet, and take care of yourself. Ideally a bunch of times a day, but let’s be honest here.
Legs up the wall is perfect for everybody to do regularly, but especially busy moms who frequently forget to eat, shower, care for their bodies, or really do anything at all for themselves. You deserve a ten-minute break once a day to calm your mind and restore your body.
So share this post with a pal or two and challenge them to do legs up the wall with you every day for the next month. Just a month! And then you’ll probably love it so much you won’t want to go back. Take pictures of your legs up the wall and share it with your friend, and remind them to go put their legs up the wall pronto!
We all deserve a short period of time daily to return to ourselves. Not our mom selves, or our wife selves, or our work selves. Our SELF selves. Doing legs up the wall every night is a great way to come back to that place. My friend Sarah of Left Brain Buddha and Brilliant Mindfulness has a wonderful mindfulness for mothers course. A mantra she uses for mothers’ meditation is, “Deep within me, there is a calm that cannot be disturbed.”
I love that quote. Sometimes when I’m doing LUTW (can we make this an abbreviation now, please?), I close my eyes and repeat it to myself. That calm is SO hard to find some days. So let’s find it together for the next 30 days! Are you ready? Grab your friends, share this idea with them, and let’s keep each other accountable for the teensiest bit of self-care, shall we? Now go put those legs up the wall!
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