As the weeks of these stay-at-home orders drag on, the blues can really start to creep up on you. The days blend into one another and a lot of our normal coping mechanisms (the gym, hugs, changes of scenery) are inaccessible. I compiled this list of eight ways show yourself some love so that you can nurture your body, mind, and soul a bit more. Nothing on this list is a cure-all, but everything on this list personally helps pull me out of a dark place. So let’s all show ourselves a little extra lovin’!
The way we speak to ourselves in our heads has such a powerful impact on the way we feel and live. Where your head goes is where your heart goes. So rather than slipping into doom-and-gloom, self deprecating internal thought patterns, try and keep things positive. This is not to say that you should trick yourself into thinking everything is happy and perfect all the times. It just means that trying to redirect your thoughts can be super powerful. For example, when you start thinking “It doesn’t matter if I work on my business right now because I can’t see my clients anytime soon anyways.” try redirecting your thoughts to “Just because I can’t physically see my clients anytime soon doesn’t mean I can’t still better my business in anticipation for the day I can officially reopen.” So, open those mental shades, put positive mantras on your walls and make an intentional effort to focus on the good things in your life.
It is so easy to fall into the habit of fixating on our own problems. Sometimes we need a break from the internal monologue and the best way I think to do that is to call a friend. Ask them how they are and really listen. Truth is, we’re all struggling in our unique ways. Listening to someone else’s reality reminds us that we’re not alone. Choose to practice empathy and break the habit of fixating on your own corner of the world.
Did someone say dance party?! Get up and move!! Go for a walk or turn on a good song and crazy dance till it’s done. Moving your body is one of the best ways to love yourself both physically and emotionally. I don’t need to lecture you on the benefits of exercise and endorphins, but I’m not even talking about “working out”. Moving in any way is therapeutic, healing, and uplifting. So find out what movements feel good to you and your body and get to it!
Listeeeeen there’s got to be a balance to everything. But as a type 3 nothing kicks me out of a weird funk like crossing things off my list. The important thing here is to not judge whats on your list or try to define the word “productive”. There are days where I can cross some really big awesome things off my list and then there are days where my list looks more like this:
And that’s okay. Focus on the things that you can do and rest in the fact that things aren’t always going to feel this out of whack. So, whether your list is full of basic needs, self care, or big goals, just cross of the things that you can and let yourself feel good about all the accomplishments no matter how big or small.
Loving yourself starts with setting good boundaries. But the great thing about personal boundaries is…they’re personalized. My boundaries may not be your boundaries and that’s totally fine! Are you struggling with anxiety about the world? Determine what news sources you trust, and get your info from them, not Twitter and your sister’s friend’s cousin. Maybe you’re struggling with endless scrolling on Instagram: set a timer for how many hours a day you can spend on the app! Once you determine what your boundaries need to be, stick to them! Even better if you tell someone else what your boundary is so that they can help encourage you! Ultimately, you are in control of your own life and no one knows your needs better than you.
Something about using my hands to create always makes me feel so much better. Depending on your art medium of choice, it’s usually a great way to get a break from screen time, too! Painting, watercolor, collage, gardening, cooking sewing, whatever it is you don’t have to be good at it! You just have to put your whole heart into it and trust that what you’re making is worth it. Half of the time I don’t do creative things, because I don’t think it’ll be “good enough”, but then I remind myself that the value comes from the process of doing it, not whatever the end result might look like.
Taking adequate time to rest is absolutely crucial way to love yourself. Oftentimes I mistake “resting” for doing nothing, but that’s not always true. Rest can take so many different forms for people. So, really listen to your head and your heart to find something that restores yourself and your energy levels. Some of my favorites ways are:
Journaling is a great way to not only show yourself some love, but also to reconnect with your internal world. If you love to make lists, but feel like you’re not a “writer”, then try journaling through lists! Gratitude lists, prayer lists, or worry lists can be great prompts to get the pen flowing. I also love to use guided journaling as a way to help unload some of my emotions. Questions like “I feel ___”, “Can I change the situation?”, “What is something that caused a reactive response from me lately”, all are a great place to start.
I hope these eight, action items help inspire you to love yourself in new, exciting, stay-at-home-order-friendly ways! Never forget: you’re not alone, you matter, and you are powerful in so many ways.
Want to see more content like this? Check out my other posts here!