e’ve all been dealt a serious blow this year. COVID-19 came around and ruined a lot of things for us. Some of us lost our jobs, had our incomes slashed, lost loved ones, fell back into unhealthy habits to cope with everything and the list goes on. The deterioration of human nature became a lot more amplified this year following the murders of many Black persons and we’ve been at home, soaking in all this hate and negativity and it has been affecting us mentally, emotionally and even physically. This year just hasn’t been okay on all fronts and we’ve been neglecting taking care of ourselves. Thankfully, there are many activities we can implement into our daily lives to help mitigate the effects of 2020 on all of us. Here are 5 Self-Care Practices you can Start Today.
1. Taking a Social Media Detox.
I understand this may be hard for most of us. We want to keep ourselves informed with everything that’s going on. That is completely understandable. But we have to establish a balance; sensory overload is a serious thing and filling our minds with so many negative things all at once will eventually begin to take a toll on us. Select a day in the week to log off. Spend some time with your family, your friends or even by yourself. You can also choose certain hours throughout the day to do so, whatever works for you. I can assure you that Twitter, Instagram and all the others will still be there when you get back.
2. Go out with/video call friends.
With most places reopening again, we now have the privilege to go out again and do some of the things we’ve missed doing these last 4 months. Pick a day to go out and have some fun with your friends. Be it shopping, going out for drinks/eats or just chilling at each other’s homes, use that time to distract yourself from everything that’s been going on around you. Safely, of course. You should still adhere to the safety guidelines administered by your government. However, if going out is still limited in your country, video calls are still an amazing way of keeping in touch with your friends/loved ones.
3. Going out for a walk.
And no, I’m not saying you should work out. Although, if working out is something you do to get you out of a funk, then by all means. But no, I’m not referring to working out here. Taking a walk to dump your negative thoughts, to take in the nature around you, can do a lot. If you have a park near you, take a short trip there and just breathe. Relax your muscles, unclench your jaw, roll your shoulders and just breathe. You can even meditate if you feel like it. The main objective of the walk is to clear your head and find relaxation in nature.
4. Listening to music (especially nostalgic ones, or SMV's Friday Dancing Playlist).
One of my many self-care habits is this one. There’s something about listening to music from your childhood or from happy moments in your life and feeling that nostalgia course through your body that makes you feel so good in the moment. One of my favs from way back when is Somewhere Only We Know by Keane.
That song, although a bit melancholic in sound, makes me feel happy. It’s a beautiful written song and I honestly enjoyed it so much when I was younger. Create a playlist of all your favorite songs from years ago and lay down and play it through. You can even play it on the walk I mentioned in the last point.
5. Having a Self-Care day.
Lighting a scented candle, taking a bubble bath, giving yourself an at-home mani and pedi… All of these (and much more) can be added into your daily routine, or you can section out an entire day filled with just self-care activities. It feels good to just be by yourself and treat yourself to lovely things. With the hustle and bustle of our day to day life, and with everything that has been going on, we tend to forget these things. They’re the very last thing we think of when scheduling our day. But we should start off small. Section out a few hours, a day or even two days in the week, whatever works for you, to treat yourself to some lovely things.
Life is hard. Things aren’t looking up right now. But that doesn’t mean we need to neglect ourselves of self-care. Hell, now’s the time more than ever to give ourselves these things. I hope you implement some of the things I listed, I’ll be sure to do so also. We deserve to take care and treat ourselves to lovely things. Always.