Look after yourself

Taking Care of Number One

Adversity can bring out the best in us, but it also drains us of our energy. Our mental and emotional health can take a sudden dive under minor pressures so it’s important to make our self-care a priority during prolonged upheaval. Here’s three ways to take care of number one:

Slow

Life is frenetic. We’re always busy, even during our downtime. Slowing our lives gives us the chance to get the rest we need, process our emotions, and reduce stress levels. It has other benefits, too. When we slow, we see the world around us and the events in it with clarity. We’re able to plan and prepare. 

How to slow down:

  • Do less. Lockdown has given us the chance to see what’s cluttering our lives. Pick up what matters, leave the rest.

  • Get green and spend time in nature. 

  • Be present. Try preparing a drink or meal, focus and immerse yourself in each step. Relish it.

Ground

There are around 200,000 nerve endings in each of our feet. Our brains rely on sensory information from our feet to help us assess our environment, but we tend to forget about them. Walking barefoot can help reduce blood pressure, stress, tension, and pain. It can help to increase balance and self-awareness and gives us an emotional boost. 

Take time to be barefoot. Allow your feet to feel the earth beneath them. Spread your toes, rock back and forth, side to side. You can do this in your home or out in green spaces. Take care in public spaces and watch out for anything you’d not want to step on.

(Dis)Connect

How many times a day do you pick up your smart device? Technology allows us to be connected 24/7. But this also means that we’re always connected to the things that stress us out. Tech-free Friday is great for taking a break but maybe we could reap the benefits every day. 

Plan each day to unplug from your devices, even if it’s for an hour. Logging-off helps to improve our mental health, reducing stress and feelings of loneliness. It gives us back our real-world lives and helps us to reconnect with the environment around us.

No matter what’s happening in the world, we need to look after ourselves. The benefits are massive not just for us but also for our communities. By ditching burn-out and taking care, we can overcome anything. We can thrive. 

by SE Black

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