Self care is more important than ever. Especially now, as the covid-19 pandemic enters its 10th month, we must remember to be kind to each other. But more significantly, it’s a time to be kind to ourselves, so we can avoid pandemic burnout.
Break up with your perfectionism
For some of us, being hard on ourselves is often our go-to in stressful situations, like the hectic months we’re living through right now. Lock-down has brought with it many obstacles when it comes to productivity and we must not be frustrated with ourselves for not working like ‘normal’ in a time that’s anything but.
Here’s what has worked for me.
I used lock-down as a chance to pause and reflect, but also for self-development. One of the most significant things I learned during this period was how to make time for myself.
My definition of that is doing something purely for my own well-being. As it is an exceedingly difficult period right now, I try my best to be nice to myself in some way every day.
Self care during the pandemic
Only you know how to best take care of yourself. For me, these activities range from FaceTiming a friend, to getting my nails done, dancing around my room or going on a run (or attempting a run, at any rate).
Before lock-down, I had no interest in running. For me, a run meant going bright red in the face and plodding along at a slow speed. But I kept at it, in my own way. Today, my running stints are still half of those things but what has changed is my mindset.
During lock-down, I learned running wasn’t about being the fastest or fittest, but about knowing that, after the run, my brain and body would be flooded with feel-good chemicals and screaming ‘hallelujah’!
I’m not saying my ways of being nice to myself will necessarily work in the same way for you. What I am saying, though, is taking just ten minutes a day to do something for yourself will make a massive difference in your mental and physical well-being.
Bru-C’s lyrics are all about the importance of making time for yourself – a great listen for your run!
Self care means having “me time”
Making time for yourself is a way to refresh and recharge. My runs are a chance for me to channel my thoughts and relieve built-up anxiety. Spending time with yourself is also an opportunity to gain better insight into who you are, your strengths and weaknesses and what you can work on. The possibility to slow down allows you to reflect on the little things you may otherwise take for granted.
Another good way to take some time alone could be to wake up before the rest of your household and create your ideal peaceful environment where you can exercise, enjoy your morning coffee or prepare a nice breakfast.
Something I still struggle with is maintaining a balance between work and “me time’. It’s so important to make space in your schedule for it, yet it’s often the first thing to go when you’re stressed or in a hurry.
Don’t feel guilty about taking some time for yourself. It doesn’t mean you’re disconnecting with the world, but offers a chance to reconnect with yourself.
So, if you’re looking for a way to unwind and avoid burnout – get your calendar out and add ‘me time’ to the schedule. That’s what self care during the pandemic is all about.
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