There’s a lot of uncertainty the world over right now and I know everyone is trying to give out their own advice, so if you don’t need mine, feel free to skip this blog post. If you choose to read on, all I really have to say is this: Take care of yourself.
Self-care is now more important than ever (though it should always be important!). If you’re feeling stressed about the recent changes, find things to do that make you feel in control, relaxed or engaged in something completely unrelated to current events. I know it can be really tough to do that in the current climate, but here are just a few suggestions if you find yourself stuck in a stress-rut during the pandemic.
While you might find yourself looking to books for an escape, I have an alternate solution: if you’re one of those people who has ever thought “I’d like to write a book” now might be the time to start putting your ideas down on paper. You don’t have to actually start writing a novel, but usually research and outlining are just as engaging and can pull you out of your own mind and put you inside one of your character’s minds. Once you begin working on your book, you’ll find yourself drawn into your own story throughout your day, often when you are working on something completely different. You might hear a song and it will help you choreograph a fight sequence, or you might be cooking and think about what your characters might eat. Writing books is, for me, an escape, and if you’ve ever considered writing one of your own, now might be a good time to begin.
Another self-care practice might be taking the time to learn something new. If you appreciate art, you can watch lessons on drawing and digital art on the internet and practice basic or new techniques. If you have an instrument gathering dust, you can finally learn how to play it. Many language sites, such as Rosetta Stone are offering free or discounted lessons right now, so you can learn a foreign language. Or if there’s a recipe you’ve been longing to try, now is the time to practice and experiment. I know bingeing on Netflix and potato chips is tempting (and soothing!) but good self-care should engage the mind and body, so consider trying something that engages both.
And lastly, one of my favorite self-care rituals: Try taking a soothing bath. When was the last time you had a long, luxurious bath? I like to use bath salts for color and calming scents, while listening to music and reading a good book. And if you add a glass of wine (or another beverage) it engages all your senses at once in a way that is deeply relaxing. Or, if a bath isn’t your thing, you can replicate this experience by sunbathing in your backyard, or even lying in bed after lighting a scented candle. In all this chaos, it’s important to find a moment of zen for yourself.
Whatever your preferred self-care, please make sure to practice it. Stay well, everyone.