What does that mean for you? I am willing to bet that you wouldn’t guess what it means to me.
I spend most of my days on my feet – talking, instructing, demonstrating exercises or dance steps and teaching about them. I rarely have trouble “closing my rings” (Apple watch wearers, you know what I mean). Fortunately, I rarely get sick or feel run down. I credit that in large part to not only exercising regularly and eating well most of the time, but to making sure to take care of my mental health and feed my soul in ways that I need.
And it's not always easy! As active as I like to be, I do have trouble slowing down the constant buzz inside my head. From the talk I hear among my girlfriends, this is a fairly common gender pitfall.
So for me, feeding my soul (to quiet my brain) comes in the form of guilty pleasures. Some might guess that I take time for myself to meditate – or maybe do a yoga class to indulge in a class I don't have to teach. But it's not anything like that.
As zen as it is NOT - reality TV is my happy place. Bravo: you are my lifeline when my brain is fried. HGTV: you have pulled me through some dicey evenings. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love reading and watching fiction, and can easily become absorbed by a great story – it's awesome to escape into someone else’s well-written world. But sometimes, when what I really need is to just stop hearing the sound of my own voice in my head, I head over to the OC and find out what those crazy ladies are arguing about.
Let me add a few disclaimers:
I don’t watch reality TV in daylight. They are usually reserved for late night binges.
I can’t stand a Kardashian, so I’ve never watched.
Also, the Atlanta and Dallas housewives just don't do it for me.
But disclaimers aside, these admittedly terrible programs help my brain's particular brand of crazy relax. I can finally let it quiet down while I get swept up by (or sucked into, depending on how you look at it) other people's drama. And the unexpected bonus it that this actually allows some new information to sink in after a while. Often, I'll watch for a stretch, then either hop back on my computer to finish work, or grab that book I’m loving, or even then watch a movie with Nic that we’ll both enjoy. It’s like I just need that little bit of “nothingness” to let my brain slow down before I can fully allow it to switch gears.
So especially during the hectic pace of the holidays, I encourage you to give in to your guilty pleasures. They just may turn out to be THE thing that saves your brain – or your body – from folding under the stress of it all. Pay attention to what you really need and let yourself go there. Then get up and get moving. Or read a book. Or do something with a loved one that will help feed their soul, too.