What’s your plan for today? When asked that question most people start listing off errands, work deadlines, chores, or plans for their children. Self-care is rarely mentioned. We sometimes feel guilty setting aside time for ourselves, but we shouldn’t! Self-care plays a vital role in stress relief and staying healthy, especially when many of us have recently seen a major shift in our everyday lives. Find strategies that work best for you and start integrating them into your routine. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Establish a solid sleeping routine by going to bed and waking up around the same time. Start unwinding an hour before bed by setting your clothes out for the next day, reading a book, playing relaxing music, or whatever helps you. Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night to feel well rested and alert.
We are constantly surrounded by technology, making it easy to become addicted to screen time. The problem is that we never let our brains relax. Even when you think you are calming down by scrolling through your social media feed or watching a television show, your brain is still working. Set your phone down, turn off the television, and breathe. When was the last time you just let yourself be present? It is amazing what you will discover about yourself during moments like this.
What are 5 things you are grateful for? Think about it now. They don’t have to be complex. Today I am grateful for the sun shining through the tree branches, long conversations with my mom, the nutty smell of coffee, extra quality time with my boyfriend, and the delicious Thai red curry I had for dinner. Replaying your day in your head and appreciating good things that happened creates positive emotions of happiness, pride, and gratitude. It is a wonderful way to end your day.
While we currently cannot gather in person, we can still stay connected with people. Facetime, Skype, and Zoom are a few ways to video call with friends and family; it is nice to still be able to see one another’s faces as an alternative to talking over the phone. Now is a great time to catch up with people you haven’t spoken to in a while. I’ve already seen a lot of creative ideas out there like the app “Houseparty” to take a break away from all the craziness going on.
You can still exercise even with the gyms being closed! AddeoFit hosts live classes on Facebook daily that you can replay whenever it fits in your schedule. Plan when you are going to workout ahead of time to avoid challenges and excuses. On days you aren’t working out, try going for a long walk or practice yoga. Either way, incorporating regular exercise will boost your mood, increase your quality of sleep, reduce stress, and overall make you feel better.
Give your body the healthy, nutritious food that it needs and find dishes that you look forward to eating! If you have more time on your hands right now, try that recipe you’ve been wanting to make or learn something new in the kitchen. Don’t like to cook? There is an abundance of one pan or slow cooker recipes that are simple and delicious. The internet is full of ideas. So, what are you going to try this week?