Have you made time for some much-needed self-care today?
You should – and if you haven’t been doing this lately, now is the best time to dive back in. August is Happiness Happens Month !
It might seem silly and trivial with the COVID-19 pandemic ongoing. However, I think that focusing on self-care and making an effort to nurture happiness has never been more essential.
As a mom, I’ve talked about why self-care is important . While I deal with the everyday stress of mommyhood, it’s also impossible to ignore what’s going on in the world. So many stressors affect mental and emotional outlook these days.
Did you know that America – and likely many other nations across the globe – is currently experiencing a mental health crisis? In a recent survey, almost 50 percent of respondents admitted to showing signs of depression . Historically, the norm for this statistic in the U.S. is about 37 percent. Fear and anxiety rates are also soaring.
While some things are out of our control, something we can all do is increase mental health awareness. Personally, I find that it’s easier to be a better mom and a better person overall when I show up and look after myself.
Here are three of my best self-care mental health tips to help support and spread joy in daily life, whether or not it’s Happiness Happens Month.
Self-care can be little luxuries like lighting candles and soaking in a bubble bath, but plain and simple things also have a big impact.
Go to bed at the same time every day and get (or try to get) enough sleep every night. Exercise – even low impact commitments, like walking the dog, can improve mood and lessen anxiety . I’ve been getting out of the house in the evenings and going for a light jog. I run at a grandma pace (no offense to any grandmothers out there) while listening to a Goop or Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations podcast. It clears my head and breaks my day up.
Eat healthily and try to moderate junk food, caffeine, or alcohol intake. I know, easier said then done but I’m here just to give some friendly suggestions and ideas 😉 I also need to hear it too as a reminder!
Don’t let being home all day wreak havoc on your routine. Sleep, eat, and do chores at regular intervals. Do periods of work and/or homeschooling in manageable chunks. Sticking to a schedule helps make you feel more in control.
If COVID-19 news stresses you out, limit the time you spend updating yourself. It’s important to be informed, but it’s enough to check reliable sources – like the WHO and the CDC – on days when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
It also helps to occupy your mind with more positive and productive thoughts. Learn a skill, pick up a hobby, or even just set aside time for meditation.
Self-care may also involve others. It can be comforting and cathartic to talk to people you love and trust about your feelings and concerns.
With everyone staying indoors, the way we socialize should adapt. You can write more emails, send more messages, and have video call parties with your friends and family.
I hope we all have an amazing Happiness Happens Month! Remember: self-care can be soothing, but it is not always enough. Please do seek help if you need it. Check out online resources and consider calling a crisis hotline if you are unsure of what to do.