For several weeks—or even longer, depending where you are in the world—we’ve been finding ourselves trying to gain footing and get used to our new realities, which present differently for each person.
When COVID-19 hit our city, my initial reaction was shock and panic. I was so worried about my husband and my family back home that I was having sleepless nights and anxiety attacks. I was crying a lot, and I was sad most of the day. I never felt so vulnerable and scared.
But life has to go on. I can cancel my yoga sessions or cut back on socializing, but I cannot cancel my reality. I still have to show up at work, I still have to make dinner, I still have to do errands. I still have to live my life and continue to find or live my purpose.
So how do we take a break and interrupt the fear and stress cycles?
Answer: rethink your self-care.
Life is crazy and most of the time, I tend to put my self-care on the back burner to make room for all other things.
However, practicing self-care is an essential part of my life and it has helped me stay sane and upbeat. A few simple habits of self-care can be so rewarding and relaxing that it allows me to let go of everyday stress and negativity around me.
Below are some self-care tips that you can try today. Pick the ones that speak to you and adapt them to your liking.
PUT YOURSELF FIRST.
As women, we find it really difficult to remember our own happiness in addition to everyone else’s. We tend to love selflessly, but we also forget to give to ourselves.
Do you remember what flight attendants say before the plane takes off?
They always say, “Put on your own oxygen mask first before helping others around you.”
If you aren’t taking care of yourself, how will you be able to take care of others well?
You cannot share an empty cup, so fill yours first. So put away the excuses and take care of yourself first.
CREATE JOYFUL RITUALS.
One of the simple things that make my inner self smile is having a few joyful rituals. This is my way of celebrating life and infusing my days with joy and meaning.
So what is a joyful ritual? For me, it can be a simple thing as enjoying tea or coffee time while reading a book on a weekend. Or having a nice, warm bath while listening to a relaxing sound or music. Or it can be a hugging ritual with your partner each night before bed.
A joyful ritual can be something so simple or common or even silly, yet heartwarming enough to make your soul smile, no matter what life throws at you.
Being thankful can make your life better in so many ways.
Research shows that people who are grateful find greater sense of feeling connected to others and have more optimistic view towards life.
One way of practicing gratitude is by starting your day with morning gratitude affirmations.
Affirmations of gratitude will help you to set the intention to spend your day in a state of thankfulness. This positivity allows you to better cope with any unpleasant surprises which the day may bring.
Saying positive affirmations helps me stay grounded and positive in the midst of daily challenges. It helps build my self-confidence, and overcome self-doubt and negative thoughts.
Here are some examples of positive affirmations that you can tell yourself everyday:
“Today, I am brimming with energy and overflowing with joy.”
“I am beautiful and strong, and my imperfections make me unique.”
“I am worthy of love, respect and acceptance. There is love all around me.”
“I have the power to create change.”
“All areas of my life are abundant and filling.”
“Every experience I have is perfect for my growth.”
“My past is not a reflection of my future.”
“My life is a gift and I appreciate everything I have.”
“My body is healthy; my mind is brilliant; my soul is tranquil.”
“I am successful. Money comes easily and effortlessly.”
Green eating is about making healthy, natural choices when it comes to the foods we eat along with choosing foods that are healthy for our planet.
Why do I choose green eating?
Because it is better for your health, it reduces fuel consumption and global warming and it helps the local environment.
We live in such a rushed, over-stimulated, over-gadget-ized society. People tend to grab their phone first thing when waking up. Then work begins. Checking email leads to replying to email and before you know it, it’s time to get up and get ready for work.
Leave the electronics alone until you’ve given yourself time to prepare for the day. Make time for breakfast (the most important meal of the day) and save the email for the end of your morning ritual.
Find somewhere beautiful – a park, the woods, your kitchen – and just sit there. Be still. Absorb the sound of the wind through the trees, the light and the shadows, the peace, and just appreciate the stillness. It’s meditative and calming. Make time for stillness regularly.
More importantly, we should acknowledge our emotions. Allow yourself to be sad, angry, or frustrated, but do not dwell on it. We may not be able to control some things around us but we always have a choice to remain in control of our actions.
Jomay Amora-Dueck is the creator of theecoistcollective.com. She is the author of Becoming Ecoist: A Beginner’s Guide to Minimalist and Sustainable Living. Download your FREE copy at www.theecoistcollective.com.