I am suffering from what I call pandemic exhaustion, I am sure you can relate. It has been months that we have had to change how we live our lives to stay healthy. My clients are experiencing the same thing and I am sure you can relate as well. It use to be that taking off my bra when I got home was a relief, now it is taking off my mask, washing my hands, all my groceries and my hands again!
I live alone with two cats who I am sure now think I am a house cat myself! I use to work from home before the pandemic but not being able to go somewhere, have an adventure, dine out or go to a workshop or lecture is something different.
I have had to adjust and really focus more than usual on my mental health and have helped my clients do that as well. I have always been honest that I suffer from anxiety and depression. This pandemic has not helped that so I really had to come up with ways to adjust to this way of life for now. These tips I am sharing with you are the same ones I share with my clients.
USE YOUR PLANNER
One of the things that helps is to feel as if you achieved something by the end of the day. Without that we can flow listlessly from day to day and feel unsatisfied.
Put your work to do’s in your planner if you are working and cross them off as you do them. Do the same thing for household, children and basic daily to do’s so you can check them off.
Make sure to carve out time for mental health work, exercise and relaxation time. If you don’t, you might not do it.
This may sound silly but we need a sense of purpose especially when there is so much going on that you can not control in the world.
I am sitting here sipping my mug of calm tea as I write this. Take time to destress and for self care. You know the saying: you can not pour from an empty cup. Schedule time to meditate, journal, read, walk, take a bath, drink some tea and just to be.
Personally I have a mantra I use when I start to get stressed: I can not control the world but I can control my environment. It helps me when I get stressed out about things I can not control. Each of my clients have one that works for them. What works for you?
I journal daily as well, it helps to get my thoughts out and gives me a sense of relief. Even though I coach my clients and I love doing that, I have a coach now as well. It gives me a chance to talk about what is bothering me so that I can get back to my life.
HAVE SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO EACH WEEK
Since our lives have changed so much by this pandemic, a lot of our plans had to be put away. That is why I feel it is so important to have something to look forward to each week. Every Saturday night I make myself a really nice dinner and watch a movie. I make sure it is a meal that I will look forward to all week. It does not have to be fancy or expensive but something you don’t make all week long. I have made chicken piccata, beef stroganoff and one Saturday I made a meal of different appetizers I made. Just make what makes you happy. That way if you are having a hard week, you know that at the end of it you get your special meal and a movie. This could also be a bubble bath, zoom party with friends… just something to look forward to doing.
This is a strange time we are living through right now and it can be stressful. Remember to take care of your mind, body and spirit. Know what you can control and what you can not control. Find purpose in your day and have something to look forward to. Reach out for support if you want it. Most of all, take care of yourself.