Taking Care of You

Feeling trapped by work, school and the rules set because of the pandemic? Everyone, in some way, has been affected by the coronavirus, whether it’s falling ill, dealing with an altered schedule or routine, or suffering from isolation. It’s been hard to adapt in these uncertain  times, but there are ways to get through this.

It is important to do what you can to stay healthy by boosting your immune system with healthy foods. Not only does eating fruits and veggies help your body fight off infection and viruses, it also gives you the energy you need to get through another day.

Don’t underestimate the power of the sleep bank. If your nights are sleepless, set strict guidelines for yourself to fill up that sleep bank. If an afternoon nap is the only place you can catch some shut-eye, lie down for 20 minutes or so (any longer could leave you feeling groggy). Head to bed a littler earlier than usual if time allows. But never forget that sleep deprivation was once used as a form of torture. All sorts of negative things can happen to our bodies and minds when we are deprived of sleep. Make it a priority.

Learn to say no to too much stuff. We all want to be involved. We want to be included and be part of the friend or co-worker group. We want to volunteer so we can expand our circle and feel a part of something. We want to work more so that we can make more money and not suffer some of the devastating consequences of a failing economy. But there are only so many hours in the day for all of us. Choose wisely how you spend your time. Think about your day as a pile of pennies. When you’re out, you’re out. Divide them in a way that serves you well.

Connecting with others, even if it’s just catching up through text or through a video phone call, can help us feel less lonely and isolated and capable of handling the present situation. You’re never alone. Reach out to a family member, catch up with a friend or send a message to an old acquaintance. The important thing is to get to a point where you are both giving and receiving equally so that you can walk away from the conversation replenished.

Invest in a good notebook and pen. This may sound silly, but a favorite pen can go a long way. Creating a daily or weekly to-do list sounds as if it might be overwhelming or daunting, but it actually does the opposite, allowing you to see everything in one place, prioritize tasks and then feel accomplished as items are ticked off. There is power in having control and serenity in turning mental chaos and chatter into an organized list that can be accomplished.

Getting out and enjoying nature, whether it’s on a beautiful, brisk fall day or in the colder temperatures of winter, can remind you that the world is much bigger than your own four walls. Just 20 minutes a day in the outdoors in the sunlight can replenish vitamin D levels, making you feel energized, and the world is filled with opportunities to engage the five senses, offering a much-needed distraction from the uncertainty of the world right now.