Tuesday 5 May 2020

Tips for self-care in self-isolation - AD

(This post contains a gifted product from Remy)

The COVID-19 pandemic has got us feeling a little shaken up and spat out. More than ever, people are becoming increasingly aware of their own mental health and how it's being affected by this time of "unprecedented change" (I know, it's a phrase you've heard everywhere by now!), and are trawling the internet for how best to protect themselves mentally, as well as physically. I'm not claiming to have the answers, and I've certainly had and will continue to have wobbles, but I wanted to share some of the ways that I have been helping myself to get through this with my sanity as intact as possible. I hope each and every one of you can take something from this post that you will find helpful.

I have been self-isolating as I am on the government's "vulnerable" list and I am fortunate enough to have the opportunity to work from home. This huge change to my normal routine has left me a bit out-of-sorts, so I do find sticking to a routine as far as possible does help. I don't get up quite as early, but I am still up and somewhat dressed by around 8:30 and it gives me the "ready to start my day" mentality that I need. A method that I use when I am struggling to find my motivation is to count backwards from 5 to 1 (note: particularly helpful when struggling to part ways with your bed!) and when you reach one, you shift your butt and do whatever it is that you need to do.

Keeping your home clean and tidy is vital to giving yourself the best shot at a good mindset for the day. I find that spending half an hour in the morning doing just a little bit of cleaning and tidying makes a huge difference to my mood and overall get-up-and-go levels for the day. Making my bed, putting a load of washing on and making sure that surfaces are relatively clutter-free makes me feel almost a bit refreshed and a little more in control. Tidy home, tidy mind!

*AD - Gifted*
As a long-term anxiety sufferer, I am always looking for new things to help manage my symptoms. I've seen a lot of excitement around weighted blankets for a while now, but the hefty price tag always put me off and the claims just seemed that little bit too good to be true. Since then I have been very kindly gifted a weighted blanket from Remy and I haven't looked back. Using the guide on their website, I opted for the 10kg blanket which is perfect for me. It doesn't shut my noisy brain up, but it does soothe the more physical effects of anxiety, and I found that it was easier not to let worrying thoughts escalate when using the blanket. I really wouldn't be without it now, and I hope to continue to feel the benefits over the coming years. Thanks, Remy!

It's all too easy to sit on the sofa like an upturned turtle and spend hours upon hours scrolling through social media. I found this was hugely problematic for my mental health as it was a CONSTANT influx of negative news, most of it false and sensationalised. I've been taking time away from this and by encouragement of Sean (my fiance), have been listening to audio books. This has been great for me as I do love a good book, but I've found it so difficult to really settle in and focus on reading recently.

Food. Food is great. I love to cook and bake, and now is a great time to use it as an excuse to have fun and get creative. I am SO guilty of getting in a food rut and rotating the same 5 dinners for weeks on end (who's with me?!) but I have tried a few new recipes and feel much better for it! I was also clinging onto one, precious bag of bread flour which I've now cracked open to make a loaf as we are really trying to only go out once every two or three weeks.

I have fallen in love with our Nintendo Switch all over again with the recent purchase of Ring Fit Adventure. It's a really easy way to get into doing a bit of movement whilst we are all stuck indoors. I've also enjoyed doing 1 or 2 workouts from some of the fitness YouTubers out there too, but it's important to remember that these people do exercise for a living. It's literally their job, so don't beat yourself up if you can't keep up with their pace! Movement really is essential for wellbeing. It's so easy to become one with your sofa or bed, but I promise you will feel a thousand times better for just getting some form of movement in. Don't forget, you are moving your body for joy, not for punishing yourself.

Saving the most important until last, it's essential that you keep in touch with loved ones. It's a scary time for everyone, and whilst we can't see each other in person, use texts, calls, video calls and emails to stay in touch and comfort each other. Communication is key. Whether it's a quick check in with family and friends, or hosting virtual quiz nights and dinner dates, staying connected is likely the most vital part for us all in this emotional wellbeing jigsaw puzzle we've found ourselves in.

Please remember that your feelings are valid. I know we are all very quick to shrug off how we feel with a swift "oh well, other people have it worse". Yes, some people are in more serious situations HOWEVER this doesn't take away from how you are feeling. This is very new and very scary and it's normal to feel anxious and worried, so please don't feel guilty for those emotions. Whether you're using self-isolation to learn new skills and grow healthy habits, or whether you're just trying to get through as best you can; we are all in this together. We are learning and growing and hopefully trying to be a little kinder to one another. However you're coping, please remember that we are in the middle of a pandemic, so please be gentle with yourself.

Take care and stay safe.

Samantha x

(p.s - a super huge thank you to my friends in the NHS and everybody who is a key worker. We are all more grateful than you will ever know. x)

1 comment

  1. Oh my goodness, the point about keeping your house clean and tidy resonates so much!! I live with the messiest man in the world, he tries to be tidy but still creates chaos wherever he goes! I can't stand it and the only way I can deal is to set half an hour aside each day to tidy otherwise my head is chaos!! x


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