It is often accepted that there are a
few basic things considered ‘essential’ for survival. Food, water, shelter (according to Maslow) and I would also add sleep..
However - if you are a parent with a toddler - or know any - you may be aware that eight hours of uninterrupted sleep every night is often a thing of the past (even if you're really lucky and have fantastic grandparents who can take the kids for a night or two).
When we then add in work, relationships, exercise, parenting - responsibilities all requiring your attention - not to mention self-care, growth and personal interests suddenly the lack of sleep feels overwhelming. How the heck can we function in our day to day lives?
And what if you're not a parent but have a demanding career, hobbies, relationships and a busy life that leaves you feeling wound up at night-time and exhausted in the morning? Or maybe you're just not a morning person and need a reason to get out of bed and start your day?
Enter - coffee. Aaaahhhh - caffeine. The drink that gets us up in the morning and helps us function for another day as a busy person in a hectic world.
I spent a loooooong time addicted to coffee. It helped me through the days when I'd had limited sleep, It was a lovely ritual when I met up with friends and a reason for my husband and I to go for a walk on Saturday mornings. I shared it with my parents, grandparents and clients. And I enjoyed the buzz, the feeling of productivity and focus it gave me after I’d finished.
So - why did I give it up?
I realised I had become dependent on the buzz, I needed the pick me up and became cranky and irritable before my first cup. I was using coffee to mask the hectic, unhealthy pace of my life and suddenly what was once enjoyable had become a dangerous numbing device.
Now - I'm not saying everyone has this relationship with coffee, far from it. For some people, a cup a day is lovely and perfectly fine. However, I am someone who is particularly sensitive to stimulants (and depressants for that matter) - so having 1-3 cups of coffee a day was waaaay too much - it was wreaking havoc with my emotional and physical body.
The day I decided to give up coffee was the same day I decided to start really looking after myself.
It was the day I committed to a daily yoga and meditation practice. It was the day I decided to look closely at my life. It was the day I took my health seriously - and put it above everything else. It was the day I started to put myself first because I deeply, truly understood that we can't look after anyone else unless we first look after ourselves.
This change of habit all started with an awareness that coffee was not for me. Without this first step, I would not have been able to set my intention to stop drinking coffee, and the steps I then took to do so would not have been possible.
Amanda is a (reformed) lawyer turned holistic life coach, self-care advocate, workshop facilitator, writer, speaker, avid reader, nature lover, chai tea drinker and mother to a curious, active toddler. A spirit seeker who loves connecting with others on journeys of self-discovery, Amanda believes we can all find our own version of success and live an empowered life.