Okay, I literally have been attempting to write a blog since March 23rd. I have several drafts of different subject matters to talk about. I have one about being quarantined, I have one about gaslighting, etc. However, I am sitting here quarantining per COVID-19, while participating in a mental health care webinar and finally understanding that I am not okay. Then I realize that I am not alone!
COVID-19 has literally come into our lives and turned things upside down. For some of us, we have become at-home teachers, at-home employees, unemployed, introverts not by choice, entertainers, etc. This sudden shift in our lives have affected us in a lot of different ways. For me I am overwhelmed with all of the time that I have available to make my business great, and I never realized that I am angry at what the world has forced my life to become. Whereas I know that I have no control over what is happening, I still cannot control my immediate feelings about the situation. It was not until now that I realized that where I am happy about having time to do some things that I meaning to do prior to the shut down, I am angry about the economy shutting down. This sudden shut down has implemented change in my life, and the sudden change is not something that I am too quick to adapt to.
It is much easier for most to become accustomed when change is self-implemented. You lose a sense of freedom when you are forced into change, and at this point in the quarantine we are all feeling like prisoners. So what do we do to keep ourselves uplifted and out of the prisoner mindset? The best way to get through this time is to focus on our mental health. No better way to do keep ourselves mentally healthy than to focus on self-love and self-realization.
When one thinks of self-love, we tend to focus on loving ourselves physically. What about loving ourselves mentally? The easiest way to manage your mental health through self-love is to get plenty of sleep. Sleeping for 6-8 hours a night allows your brain to function clearly, and make decision-making an easier task. A clear mind will allow you to analyze and think critically throughout the day. This lowers anxiety and decrease stress. Exercising is also a great way to practice self-love. If you are not a huge workout buff, taking a 30 minute walk will help to clear your mind. Before and after a brisk walk, make sure that you stretch. Stretching helps you to control your breathing. Also, take some time to meditate and relax your mind. Block out all distractions and focus mainly on relaxing. In conjunction with all things mentioned, do some aesthetic maintenance as well. This can include in any order doing your hair, doing your finger and toe nails, giving yourself a facial, etc.
Self-realization is a little tougher to accomplish than self-love. However, you are able to achieve it while accomplishing self-love. One of the most effective ways to achieve self-realization is self-reflection. It is my belief that everything that happens, happens for a reason. With that said, every experience should be reflected upon and used as a learning experience. During reflection, play close attention to how you reacted to the experience. Observe your feelings during the experience. Ask yourself questions such as…
Should I have reacted the way that I reacted?
Were my feelings valid?
What could I have done to have a different outcome?
Was I reacting or being proactive?
How did I affect others in the experience?
This can be done by taking the next step in self-realization which is journaling. Journaling is a great way to release your thoughts, and to reflect on various times and experiences. Journaling is also good for helping creatives to brainstorm and build new ideas and businesses. If you are diligent with journaling, you can also use this process to look back to measure progress over time. It can be very therapeutic.
So during this time, make a conscious effort to diligently take care of yourself. You can also pretty yourself up while self-loving and self-realizing. The goal is to come out of this quarantine more mentally sound than when you entered. Therefore when outside opens up again and it is time to go back to normal (somewhat normal) everyday life, your anxiety level will be low enough for you to accomplish every goal that you have set.