During these uncertain times, self-care is more important than ever. Social distancing can seem like a vacation at first, but the longer we are quarantined at home, the more anxious we can become. Not only are you stuck at home dealing with a major shift in your routine, there are also so many unknowns surrounding your life (rent, job, health, etc.). Fortunately, as we work to raise awareness regarding mental and emotional health, we are better equipped to both talk about and deal with managing constructive, daily self-care.
Pour that glass of wine and hop in that bubble bath. Smell those essential oils. Have that second piece of cake, girl! It is important however, to make a critical distinction. There is a point where self-care, or the “treat yo self” mantra, becomes self-harm. For instance, I enjoy vegging out in front of the TV with mah snacks as much as the next person, but at some point, this “self-care” habit becomes self-destructive.
Knowing where to draw the line can be trickier than we imagine and learning to listen to our bodies, our minds, and our intuition is an essential skill that can be learned by discovering productive core care techniques.
While all of those activities are forms of self-care, there are only so many bubble baths you can take and cakes you can bake. There are only so many hours, days, or weeks during this social distancing time and any time. To help you (me, us) stay mentally, physically, and emotionally healthy during these times, Womanalia has some ideas to support!
Our Core Care Mantra
Odds are that wherever you are the food scene has changed. From your regular grocery haul to your weekly night out, things are not the same. Most restaurants are either closing down for a month or moving to dine out only. We are moving towards stocking up and planning to have at least two weeks of groceries on hand. My question is: how do I continue with my balanced diet when literally every routine I have has now shifted and is no longer in my control?
While your grocery trip will look different, try to plan your meals with a mix of fresh produce and non-perishables. That way you can have fresh nutrients while making sure you will have food that will last. Whatever you do, try not to go crazy with the snack purchases (now is the time for legumes, oats, and getting creative with spices). It’s also important to be conscious of when you eat. With a normal routine, you are able to limit yourself but now with all this extra time at home, it is A LOT easier to binge all those tasty treats (definitely talking to myself).
Along with my change in diet routine, my gym time is taking a serious hit. In addition to my lack of gym visits, I am also not out and about moving throughout the day because I am not working. My movement is seriously down. Which, causes me to feel down. Luckily, we live in a very virtual world.
While your gym may be closed, you do have access to social media, YouTube, and streaming services. All of these have endless workouts that you can do from home, outside, and with or without equipment. If all else fails, go for walks. As easy as it is to sit on the couch and binge some Netflix while munching on chips, your mental and physical health will thank you when you maintain movement.
Seeing a therapist:
Like maintaining movement using virtual sources, if you need to talk to someone – DO IT. There are plenty of online counselors and mental health professionals that work virtually. Set an appointment. This may represent a major change in our lives (just look at what is happening in Italy) and it is 100% normal to feel alone, scared, and anxious. Allow yourself to feel that way. Then adjust and move forward. If you’re finding that difficult, PLEASE reach out to an online mental health service.
While we are social distancing, we are not alone. I can’t stress this enough. We are humans and we thrive on connection and relationships. Reach out to your friends, family, and loved ones via phone, text, and social media messaging. If you feel it is safe to meet up with a friend for a walk, then do so. We are all in the same boat and it is important that we come together…from a distance.
Fall in love yourself…again:
You’ve got nothing but time, girl. Amidst our new normal, I can say that I am wholeheartedly excited to spend some time alone. It took me a long time to love being by myself and to just be comfortable with being alone. I’ve got a great book list. My movement times are scheduled. And my baking skills are about to be improved. Now is the perfect opportunity to fall in love with yourself!