AD | Self-care is one of those Marmite topics, isn’t it? Some of us love it, some of us feel guilty about it, and some of us have no clue how to do it at all. But taking care of our mental and physical health is something that needs to be spoken about, and most especially right now. Because it really shouldn’t be brushed to one side as a matter of no importance. So here are some tried and tested (by me) simple ways to practise self-care during isolation, and also beyond into our new normal, whatever that may look like.
What does self-care during isolation mean to you?
Before you start planning a self-care routine, you need to decide what self-care means to you. Because for some, it will be all about the body, whereas for others, mental health is paramount. And for many of us, it will be a combination of both. But whatever you decide on, make sure you set aside some time to practise your self-care during isolation. If a full day is too much, consider taking half a day, like Jenny in Neverland advocates. Or if even that’s too much, block out an hour early in the morning or last thing at night. Whatever is going to work best for you, without causing you additional stress. But making time for self-care during isolation should be one of your absolute goals, whether you’re self-isolating, or with a partner, or with your family.
Take your time
Taking time out for reading is one of my greatest pleasures. True, I tend to do most of mine in bed before lights out, but that 30 minutes is the most wonderful wind-down and escape from the day’s hustle and bustle. If you’re crafty (or not), why not have a go at some decopatch? Flora and I both love this activity, plus we have something pretty to show at the end of it, win win. Or you could try some colouring books, which are known to be a calming activity for adults as well as children. And I’ve had a lot of fun getting my bake on with Flora recently to produce some rather delicious cakes 🙂 We’ve also had fun with a box of old photos and created some photo albums of treasured memories. And on the same note, Flora is creating a happiness jar, helping her to remember the good things about this incredible period of history we’re living through right now.
Indulge your senses
I must have over 50 candles that I’ve not used yet. Honestly, I just can’t help myself, I buy them all the time (if you’re ever stuck for a present to get me…) But there’s nothing like the warm glow and scent of a few candles to make you feel happy, is there? And I know how good a foot mask treatment, followed by a fresh manicure and pedicure, makes me feel too. As regular readers of my blog know, I’m a keen gardener and one of my greatest pleasures is cutting fresh flowers for our house. (Although if you can’t grow your own, don’t underestimate the joy of treating yourself to a shop-bought bunch each week!) And something that I’ve always adored is walking barefoot on the grass. Being in such direct contact with Nature has an unwinding and grounding effect on me that nothing else comes close to achieving.
Listen to your body
Of course you can try all the self-care routines you want during isolation but if you’re not listening to your body it’s fruitless. So, accept what you can’t change and let it go. Sleep if you need to. Cry if you want to. Talk to someone if you need to unload. Learn to say no if it means less stress for you. Why not try some CBD oils to help with any anxiety? Be kind to yourself: we’d never speak to or treat a friend the way we sometimes treat ourselves. Oh yes, and try to drink lots of water to give your body a chance to function correctly. Above all else remember this: self-care is not selfish.
Look after your body
Continuing the physical health theme, now’s a great time to think about giving yourself a once over after lockdown is fully lifted. Perhaps consider getting your blood pressure checked. When was the last time you visited the dentist? Has your weight has gone up (guilty as charged) or down? Do you want to start living a healthier lifestyle? And, yes, getting a personal health check is part of self-care too. To make life easier, you can do this online from home, even while in isolation. And if you’re based in the US, you can get $15 off your test here too. Without wanting to preach, I believe it’s really worth doing this because, if left undiagnosed, a STD can have long-lasting and – in some cases – irreversible complications.
Start a bucket list for when things return to the new normal
Because we are going to get through this and it’s vital to have something to look forward to for when that day comes. So go ahead, plan your perfect family holiday, (which countries would you LOVE to visit?), buy that fabulous crushed velvet divan set* for your newly designed bedroom, throw the party to end all parties, go sky-diving, take up pole dancing, learn how to grow your own food, write that novel, and just do whatever the hell it is you’ve always wanted to do. Because life really is too short not to. As Hunter S. Thompson wrote:
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”
How are you practising self-care during isolation? What are your go-tos that makes you feel good? Have you got any ideas or tips to share?
* This is a sponsored post with affiliate links (please see my Disclaimer).