mental health

Self-Care

How are you doing self-care during this time?

Self-care is so important right now, while we are at home with no end date in sight. A lot of people have lost their jobs. A lot of people have lost people, or know people who have lost someone to covid-19. It’s hard to find a way to manage the amount of stress that is coming at us at a daily pace.

What am I doing?

I am working out 5 days a week, still. Even with my gym closed. (Quarantine workout). There is a LOT of stuff you can do at home, even if you don’t have a home gym. There are a ton of videos for home workouts, body weight workout. Even just doing squats, squat jumps, jumping jacks and ab workouts will get your blood pumping and your heart rate up and make you feel better.

I get outside every day, even if it’s a little rainy. (But not if it’s pouring rain, because- no thanks.)

Feeling grateful that our new neighborhood is very walkable. I’ve been trying to go on daily walks with Bella (weather permitting), exploring the areas of our town.

Feeling glad we live near some very pretty, scenic areas, even though parks and trails are closed. The other day, Logan I went out for a little break to get some sun and fresh air and throw rocks in the river.

It makes me feel better getting outside. I wave to neighbors, even though we are strangers, and it makes me feel a little better about life.

I eat a “normal” diet. Or try to. I am not really doing keto, but trying my best to do low carb 85% of the time. Now is not the time to be fanatical, but I still need to eat healthy, stay on some kind of plan and just not give up entirely because eating junk food doesn’t make me feel good physically or mentally.

I call friends and family. Sometimes on my walks now I give friends or family a phone call and just check in. It’s nice to hear their voices, see how they are doing, lend an ear, vent, etc.

I read. I still read a lot. (You can check out some of my old book reviews here to find some recommendations if you need some.) I get library books on my Kindle (which is a life saver!!!). If you want to order some books online and support someone OTHER THAN Amazon, check out Powell Books! They recently had to hire back a lot of staff to fulfill online orders, which is amazing!

I take a bath a few times a week to relax. The Jacuzzi tub in our master bath was the selling point for me. It’s amazing! I turn on the Spa station on Sirius radio. I drink tea and read a book and relax.

I journal. I started a “quarantine” journal. It helps to get my feelings and thoughts out, keep track of what is happening. Even if the days are all blending together. If nothing else, it’s a record of our lives in the weird time.

I do art with Logan. For his “home school” I am on art duty. We do crafts and stuff and the painting rocks for our garden was really fun!

I take it one day at a time. It’s kind of all we can do right now.

QUESTION: What are you doing for self-care?

Emotional Detox

Recently I listened to this guided meditation and found myself relaxing just listening to it. I enjoy guided meditations a lot. While I’m not religious, I do follow a path that I believe in and meditation is a big part of that. It’s been way too long since I participated in my faith. I realized it was lacking in my life by the amount of stress I was experiencing.

While I am pretty open and honest on this blog, there are a lot of things I don’t address. I have to be vague once again, and I apologize, but I’ve been feeling an intense level of dissatisfaction with my current profession. I’ve thought about going back to school for a long time, completely changing my focus and direction, but I haven’t figured out what to change to….thus, no school yet.

I firmly believe that emotional health is just as important, if not more important than, physical health. How many of us have struggled with depression or anxiety and not FELT motivated to workout? {Raises Hand} Been there. I was there for a long time. I was depressed that I’d “always” be fat and nothing would ever change. It was a vicious cycle.

Depressed over weight –> eat to feel better –> beat self up for bingeing –> feel depressed. 

What I found was that exercising and eating healthy DID help and DID change things. I suddenly had more energy, more optimism, more happy feelings. Endorphins are an amazing thing. But what happens when those exercise endorphins don’t work as well anymore?

Spring Cleaning for the Soul

Spring is coming soon (thankfully) and with spring comes the “Cleaning” that I routinely want to do. I want to clean my house and get rid of STUFF. I want to clean my life and discard what doesn’t work anymore. I have clothes in my closet that don’t even fit me anymore, socks with holes in them, and people in my life who feed into the negative toxicity that I’ve been feeling lately.

Unresolved issues don’t go away and FOOD is not the answer. All too often I used food as a band-aid for hurt feelings or anger that I didn’t want to address when I did have the power to change my situation. That needs to change. It may be something I always struggle with, but I am conscious and aware of it and actively trying to change the patterns.

How Am I Doing It?

Keeping trigger foods out of the house so I don’t turn to comfort eating/bingeing in times of stress.

Look for things outside of what is causing me stress/unhappiness to make me happy. Sure I can’t necessarily change a current situation but I can look somewhere else for something that will make me happy.

Live in the moment. This one is really difficult for me because I’m a planner and I tend to think about the future instead of living in the moment.

Focus on fixing what I CAN fix. I am in control of what I eat, how much I exercise and how I spend my down time. If my environment is feeling overwhelming and cluttered, I can clean it. If my mind is feeling  cluttered with “nonsense” I can try unplugging; no TV, no computer, internet break. I’m already plotting a mini weekend where I disappear without some of those things for a mental break!

What about you? What are your thoughts on this?