Self Love and Self Care

During this difficult time, it is far too easy for self-care to be forgotten or neglected. Unfortunately, I find that when self-care is forgotten, my self-esteem and general well being suffers tremendously. As a result, I have three strategies that help me greatly in maintaining my mental and physical health.

The first strategy is to be sure to have an hour of physical activity everyday (at least!). There is great variety in how I do this, the simplest is to take a safe neighborhood walk with my family who is with me at home. This stretches my legs and gets fresh air into my lungs. Another method is what I call my driveway workout which is an hour of body based exercises that strengthens my muscles which are not getting nearly enough work. Yoga has also become a great at home practice to stretch me out and bring awareness to my body. Between all of these options, I find that I can stay physically active in this time of isolation.

My second strategy for self-care is to have something that can be a routine everyday other than getting up and going to bed. This can be cooking something new, exercising at the same time every day, or in my case, painting. I try every day to go into the woods behind my house and create a watercolor of a scene that I stumble upon while walking around. They all are not winners, but the act of walking into the woods and painting can be very meditative for me. This then becomes a scheduled activity to help divide up the days.

The final strategy that I have during this period of time is to keep socializing!!! Just do it from a safe distance. My family and I make sure to FaceTime of video call a different friend or family member as often as we possibly can. We will play games and talk just to keep our relationship healthy and give us new conversations and stories to share. We will also visit my grandparents from a safe distance as they sit up in their balcony and we stand/ sit below in the yard. Some days we will just chat and other days we may have a picnic.

In the end, the days are getting brighter, longer, and warmer. Summer is almost here. And while some days may be harder than others, keep fighting, keep pushing, and take care of yourself so that we can take care of others when we have to.

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