I used to think there were no good reasons to cry. That it was a sign that I wasn’t coping.

I remember one particular incident in lockdown where I was attempting to homeschool whilst trying to work and keep MTW afloat and I found myself saying that I couldn’t do this anymore and out came a flood of tears. It was a pretty spectacular start to the day – we’d not even reached the school morning break! The feelings of failure to cope seemed justified as I was crying; surely that meant I wasn’t?

I was reminded of these feelings this week as I’d had my fair share of tears.

After a Covid outbreak at school, Thomas has tested positive (thankfully no symptoms) and we’re back to online schooling. For those who experienced it first time round, you can imagine how I’m feeing. It’s like being personally dragged straight back into the height of the pandemic.

Stress and insecurity

With it came all the stress and insecurities of last time. Am I really doing enough to support him by trying to work whilst he’s doing his schoolwork? Am I a bad mum for getting flustered when I read the next lesson plan and it tells me I need to dig out loads of craft materials as he has to make a model of something? Why am I the only parent who comes on screen and looks like they’re about the loose the plot?

Yet the recent divorce I’ve gone through has taught me something important – to not constantly berate myself as it does me no good. So instead of telling myself I wasn’t coping, I researched about crying and why we do it.

6 great reasons to cry

Yes that’s right, there’s lots of benefits we get from doing it. Here’s my favourite ones:

  1. Tears contain stress hormones which are flushed out when we cry.
  2. It releases feel-good chemicals (endorphins).
  3. Those lovely endorphins help to improve our mood.
  4. It switches on the bit of your nervous system which helps us rest.
  5. It helps rally support as it lets others know we need help.
  6. It’s believed to be the way our body restores our emotional balance.

After hearing them, are you more likely to embrace a good cry too?

It’s OK to cry

I’m so passionate about women’s health and wellbeing, and that goes far beyond the physical. By opening up about how we’re feeling, we encourage others to share and break down those walls we’re all guilty of building in a bid to pretend we’ve got it all figured out.

So, if you’re feeling the same as me, I’m here to tell you there are good reasons why we cry and even that perfect mum at the school gates who looks like she stepped out of a Boden catalogue feels this way sometimes too. Trust me on that one – I’m in sessions with ALOT of women so I know!

And to help you and myself get out of a low mood, here are my go-to techniques for being kind to myself and boosting my wellbeing when times are challenging – after I’ve had a good cry, of course!

Five things I do to lift my mood when I’m low

  1. Do a workout – no surprise with this one!
  2. Read a book, preferably something that doesn’t require much thinking about.
  3. Pluck my eyebrows, do my nails & stick a face mask on. 
  4. Cook a nice meal at home or meet a friend for food.
  5. Turn off my phone and watch a film or have a Netflix binge.

What are yours?

If you’d like to explore the benefits of fitness on your mental health in a kind, supportive, and nourishing way, I have limited spots available for small group programmes – drop me a line and let’s chat.

Emma

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