Self-care Practices (that are extra helpful throughout a pandemic)
We all know that self-care practices are good for us. That’s kind of in the name, but right now we are experiencing rushes of emotions, within feelings of unfamiliar.
I started exploring the idea of self-care throughout the early stages of parenthood. Having my son young, I was a fish out of the water to life as a parent + was in need of carving out some practices that helped me.
It was through these practices that I realized that by making time to connect with myself I was honouring + respecting what I was feeling in that moment.
These practices are weaved through my life, they are far from prescriptive, but each method in its own way has supported me + that is my hope in sharing with you.
Routine – sometimes it’s nice to let the routine go, especially over summer breaks but for the day-to-day life having a routine means you can still get things done or at least creates a sense of normalcy to life (this may be of extra value if you’re still working or flexi-learning). Scheduling your day means you know what your doing + when; zooms, movement or when to get groceries, they all take time within the day. I feel the most important part of this is when you rise + when you go to bed. Our circadian rhythms can influence our immune systems meaning quality sleep keeps us happy, healthy + less out of wack (we’ve got enough of that)
Movement – Get back into your body + out of your head. There’s no denying that movement can shift stagnant energy so dance, lift weight, practice yoga, pilates or walk around the block, find your thing + do it regularly + don’t forget to roll out your tight spots, it’s not exactly a massage but the tissues will still love you for it.
Meditation – Practicing mindfulness meditation has been a game-changer for me. When meditating you are simply tuning into the present moment. This can help us honour + respect how + what we are feeling, to explore our state of being with a sense of curiosity + non-judgement.
Self-holding – so we may not be able to touch others but we can touch ourselves. Self-holding is a somatic practice that offers a soothing touch by gently holding the head, shoulders, heart + belly, applying around 20% pressure. Holding each or any area for 20 seconds to a few minutes can assist in grounding + centring our bodies.
Gratitude – there is no denying that gratitude helps shifts our perspective + gets us focusing on what we have rather than what we are missing. There is no denying there’s a whole lot to be said about right now, there’s a deep sense of loss, loneliness + unknowns but the reality is we still probably have a whole lot too. I find it helps to focus on that. You may like to journal your gratitude, I like to write mine down on a post-it + place in a jar. When I’m in need of inspiration I use this jar as a resource.
Eating well – My relationship with food has been a rocky one, but what I have learnt over time is good food is the food that nourishes us; think body + soul. You don’t need to be cooking up fancy dishes, keep it simple, fresh + nutrient-dense + when you un-funk from all of the feelings, your body will thank you for taking care of it when it needed it.
Tenderness – Above all else stay kind to yourself. Show yourself the same love, support + tenderness you would to others. If you have a bad, sad or mad day know you’re probably not alone.