Stress and Self Care During Holidays and COVID 19
There’s a lot of pressure in our society to be happy, especially during the holidays. For many, the holidays are sad reminders of loss or other struggles. Add COVID-19 to the mix, with social distancing and perhaps the financial inability to make the holidays as special as you'd like, and the stress may build or seem insurmountable. This is why it's so important to take time for yourself.
If symptoms of anxiety or depression are keeping you company this holiday season, don’t lose hope. Take the first step to a better place by taking a free and anonymous online screening. And consider these simple ways to practice self care. It can be a tricky thing to manage with a busy schedule and daily responsibilities, but taking care of you should be a priority. You owe it to your friends, family and above all yourself to be at your best!
Here are some simple ways to practice good self-care:
Set aside “me time” every day, even if this means a brisk 10-minute walk or taking a break to read a few pages of a book. Finding time to let your mind rest lowers anxiety and stress levels that build up during the day. With a refreshed mind, you will be more productive when you return to your regularly scheduled activity. Don't let guilt keep you from this important time.
Invest in your passions. Think about what you love and start doing it. Take up sketching or photography or join an online poetry or reading group. Teach yourself a few magic tricks or a foreign language. Having an identity outside of your daily priorities helps strengthen your sense of self. With work and family priorities, it can be challenging to find time to develop your own interests, but unlike “me time,” passion building does not need to happen every day. Like you, it is a work-in-progress.
Nurture your relationships. Studies show that people with strong social support systems are happier and live longer. Spending some time ONLINE with friends and family isn’t just enjoyable, it’s also good for you!
Make a realistic plan to take care of your body. For most of us, the gym is not an option during this pandemic. Jogging, walking, indoor resistance exercise are all options. Start out slowly, with a health routine that makes sense for you and fits into your schedule. Everybody is different and every body is too!