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YOU First

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Are you fighting a battle of loneliness, depression, uncertainty? In addition to the normal daily battle of sadness, anxiety, and depression, the quarantining does not help, I am quite sure.

 

Now more than ever, it is time to put YOU first. You cannot be there for others if you are not well. Your mind must be clear to think, your emotions clear to feel, your well-being first. This must take place before being there for anyone else. If you are a mess, whether it be mentally or physically, you are not going to be 100% helpful to others. Mental stress also contributes to physical health.

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 I can relate to you if you are struggling.

Here are some tips that I do hope are helpful.

I hope they are helpful to you. Fear does not have to own you!

Self Care Tips

  • Breathe - Take a few deep breaths. You need to breathe. Breathing reduces stress. 
  • Journaling – Write down your thoughts, patterns, keep track of the days. Ask yourself at the start of each morning, how am I feeling? Really feeling? Mentally and physically. At night before bedtime, maybe go back and re-visit those thoughts and journal again, include the day's events. What has changed? Do you feel the same? Do you feel better or worse? What can you change tomorrow?
  • Music – Music is so helpful. You have the world at your hands when you listen to music. The variety is endless. It is up to you. Do you wish for calming, spa, meditation? Are you feeling angry? Maybe heavy metal?
  • Dance It Out - Get to moving while you are listening to your favorite music. 
  • Talk It Out – Do you have family or friends that you can reach out to? Can you talk things through with them? In many cases, we feel as though others do not understand how we feel. We think we will be judged. Sometimes we are correct. If you are uncomfortable speaking to friends or family, reach out to a therapist. Many can be found online through televisits now, also through texts. There are many Facebook groups available.
  • Church – Reach out to your Pastor or Preacher or a church member. If you are not comfortable speaking specifically about your thoughts, just ask for prayer.
  • Spiritual Television/ Internet/ Worship/ Praise (Give Him The Glory) – Many churches now are online and allow access even to church services if you are unable to attend in person.
  • Take a Hot Bath – Relax, run a hot bath, use essential oils, and just lie back and clear your mind. If you do not like essential oils, you can use Epsom salt. There are great benefits for muscle ache relief. You can use the two in combination with each other, add a little baking soda to your bath for additional silky skin.
  • Read/Audio Books – find a good book. One that will inspire you or one that you can relate to. There are self-care, self-help, comedic, inspirational, use this time to press into the Word of God, read the Bible or listen to it on audio. Youtube has many great audiobooks as does Amazon.
  • Turn Off The News - Being informed is one thing, however, when dealing with anxiety, sadness, and depression, the news can increase these feelings. Take a break from the news. 
  • Movies – Watch a comedy or inspirational movie.
  • Rest/ Sleep- Make sure you are receiving enough rest and sleep. If you feel tired, it is okay to rest and sleep. Do not beat yourself up because you are exhausted. Change your bedding, snuggle up with your favorite blanket and get a good night's sleep or take a long nap.
  • Creativity – Use your creativity. Are you good with crafting, writing, singing, painting? Use those gifts and enjoy them.
  • Pay It Forward – Sometimes by helping others in small ways, we help ourselves. Doing small things for others and seeing them smile can elevate our moods. Make a card and send it to someone, if you can financially afford to donate to someone or an organization, do it.
  • Set a Goal List – Be realistic and reasonable. Check off your goals as you achieve them.
  • Make a Vision Board – Use magazine cut-outs, draw pictures and post on it, use postcards, print out items to post on your vision board.
  • Positive Affirmations – Post positive affirmations around to remind yourself that you are loved, you are strong, you can get through this. Place sticky notes on your mirrors, your doors, your refrigerator. Wherever it may be that you will see these notes regularly.
  • Walk It Out – Go for a walk around your yard, your neighborhood, or around a parking lot. Just breathing fresh air often helps us clear our minds. Look around, see the trees, listen to the birds, look up at the sky. See the beauty around you. It is amazing the things you will notice when you become “present”.
  • Rescue a Pet - Need a constant companion? There are many in need of homes right at your local animal rescue. Pets are comforters. They love unconditionally and are known to be support and therapy animals.
  • Set a Daily Routine – Set a daily routine and do your best to stick to it, your goal list can be part of it, in fact, you could add everything on the above list to it thus far.
  • Healthy Eating – Eat healthier. Avoid greasy and fatty foods. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Avoid sodas. Drink plenty of water.
  • Exercise on the Regular – Exercise releases endorphins. Exercise is also good for your mental and physical health. If you have physical limitations, try stretching, slow walking, low impact exercises, ask your doctor what they recommend.
  • Gardening/ Planting – Nurturing and watching something that you have planted, grow into fruition can bring a sense of accomplishment. You are also accepting responsibility and you have control over taking care of it.
  • Declutter Your Space/ Home – When you declutter, you clear the space around you, and this is proven to lead to clearing your mind. Take it at your own pace. One area at a time.
  • Donate - Donate unused items to charities, the needy, advertise them for pick up. Donate free time for services that you can even do from home, are you able to edit or proofread? Offer these services to a writer or blogger.
  • Join a Social Media Group – Join an inspiring social media group, not just one to talk to about your mental well-being or anxiety, one that has inspirational quotes, one that posts photographs of paintings, art, wildlife, landscapes.
  • Photography – You do not need to be a professional to take a photo. I use my cell phone. I personally like to photograph trees, flowers, insects, and the sky. You can also download free apps for photo editing if you are savvy enough to use it.
  • Write a Love Letter to Yourself  - Include all of the reasons as to why you love YOU. 
  • Write a Letter to the Younger You - The YOU from your childhood, your teenage years, the "you" yesterday. 
  • Control what you can and let go of what you cannot
  • Pray  - “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." 2 Timothy 1:7
  • Forgive Yourself for the Past, Be Open to Your Future
  • Share Your Experiences As You Grow - As you feel comfortable in your self-care, begin to share your experiences, ideas, and thoughts with others. Remember, YOU are also an inspiration. YOU are NOT alone!

 

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