Nine months ago, I was charging through the ocean on a cruise ship and ringing in 2020 in Honduras. I had no idea that several months later I would be reflecting on how to best protect yourself, your needs and your health in the thick of a pandemic.
But you know what? Here we are. We are living in it. Struggling in it. Being challenged in it. Pivoting in it. Taking it day by day. Showing the universe our resilience in trying times and also showing it what we need to work on.
I can feel the exhaustion; the burnout; the frustrations; the anxiousness, and before going any further, I want to say I hear you and I see you. This time we are in is not easy; and whatever you are going through, wherever you are in the world, hold on to a sense of hope and perseverance because we, together, can progress forward and get through this.
The first thing we have to do though is take care of ourselves. We are getting burned out because we aren’t taking time to refuel, refocus and refresh our mind, body and spirit. In order to do those things, we have to focus our energy on the things we can control and perform activities that allow us to maintain and prioritize our health.
Get outside. During this pandemic, we have stayed at home more. We have stayed inside more. Getting outside can help reduce stress, promotes physical activity and also increases our energy.
Get social(ly) distant. Just because we can’t all be packed into an event venue or indoor space does not mean we can’t be social. Social interaction is just as important to our health as eating healthy and being physically active. So call up your friends, get together safely outside or pencil in a few FaceTime dates. Get social my friends. Your body will thank you for it.
Talk to someone about how you are feeling. Too often we think talking about our feelings makes us soft or weak or like we can’t take care of ourselves. It is okay to ask for help. It is okay to talk to someone about how you’re feeling.
De-stress. This may seem like a loaded suggestion because this year has been stressful. Holding in all of your emotions, feelings and thoughts without having an appropriate outlet to release those tensions can really take a toll on your body. Find things to do that allow you to de-stress; even if it’s just taking 5 minutes in the morning or evening to decompress or have a dance party in your kitchen.
Think positive. There is power in positivity. If we are always focusing on the negative, our body will stay in that negative state. Reframing negative thoughts and turning them into positive ones can have a profound impact on your health.
Sleep. Turn off the phone (or at least silence it) lay down in bed, and get some shuteye. I, like many others, are guilty of staying awake wondering and worrying about everything going on in life and in the world. Doing so can cause you to sleep less and wake up feeling tired or sluggish. Prioritize that nighttime routine because it not only will help you wind down and sleep better, it will also improve your focus, productivity and energy throughout the following day.
I know some of these things may feel uncomfortable to try at first, but I guarantee that the more we create space, time and energy to do things that are good for us and that our body needs, the more energy, time and space we will have for everything else going on in our lives.