One of the most jarring aspects of this new normal has taken us by surprise: the lack of control. We’re so accustomed to going where we want to go, buying what we want to buy, and seeing who we want to see. Having those every-day, mundane choices taken away can leave us feeling helpless in our day to day – how do we continue going on as we were before when everything has changed around us? It’s so easy to fall into habits that don’t align with our needs – staying up too late, neglecting self-care rituals, not listening to our body’s intuition when it comes to exercise and food. When the world outside our front door closes for business, it’s imperative that we reclaim the space within our homes to live meaningfully. Your goals and aspirations are not cancelled, and if you focus on elevating the parts of your life that you can control right now you will come out on the other side of this ready to hit the ground running.
Having said this, we understand that productivity is not an indicator of worthiness. If your body is telling you it needs to sleep in, rest, and live gently during this time, then you should listen to it. This is the fundamental aspect of the nature of this blog: we want you to reclaim these day to day choices. You are in control of your life.
We’ve compiled a list of six ways you can elevate the aspects of your life that you can control. Try incorporating one that speaks to you into your daily routine and observe how it changes the course of your day.
- Your AM: these morning hours set the tone for the rest of your day. Take 5 minutes and stretch, feel your muscles waking up. If you practice meditation, take another 10 minutes to clear your mind and relax into your day. Incorporate a gratitude rant or a short journal session to really kickstart the day off strong. When you’re ready, try to tap into your body’s intuition to know what you should have for breakfast – for example, if you’re feeling sluggish and drained, try incorporating some fresh or frozen fruit into your meal, the natural sugars will give you a boost to kick start your day. Being in tune with this intuition allows you to prioritize your needs, and be present, rather than passively reaching for whatever is easiest.
- Getting ready for the day. If you’re an avid reader of the blog, you’ll know that we believe strongly in the power of our clothing to transform our day. When you make the decision to hop in the shower, do your skincare routine, and put on a simple outfit you are performing a vital act of self-care. By getting ready each morning you’re saying to yourself “today is worth getting ready for”. When you start looking at your life through this perspective, each day will be an opportunity, rather than a chore.
- Creating a peaceful space. Whether you’re working from home or not, the space that we live, work, eat, and rest is an important aspect of our lives. Each day, prioritize adjusting something in your space to better suit your needs. Light a candle or burn some incense. Dust the surfaces or clean the windows. Do one thing each day that contributes to creating a clean, peaceful environment for you to live. When our space is clear, we have more room to ideate and dream, without the stress of disorganization or tension present around us.
- Movement. Find a way that you enjoy moving your body each day. Take a walk or go for a jog and enjoy some fresh air. Try an online workout class. Turn on your favourite music and dance for 10 minutes. Whatever way you want to move your body is valid – no exercise is bad exercise! Releasing any pent up energy is a great way to relax into the rest of your day or evening and feel accomplished. Having trouble sleeping? Try incorporating 10-20 minutes of exercise a few hours before you go to bed to release any remaining energy.
- Create a schedule. Making a timeline for your day ahead of time is a great way to hold yourself accountable to your goals, as well as reclaim control of your routine. Every evening, set aside 10 minutes to write a short list of tasks you would like to accomplish the next day. These tasks should be small and manageable – maybe you want to finish two chapters of the book you’re reading, or make an exciting recipe for dinner. Include one small task that contributes to a big goal in your life.
- Making plans. Staying connected with our friends and family is a vital aspect of prioritizing our mental wellbeing. Making plans to engage with your loved ones, whether over the phone, through Facetime or Zoom, or even through applications like Netflix Party, can greatly improve your mood and state of mind. Continue to live with intention. Having a big, full life is not put on pause because of these circumstances, and the connection is at the heart of what makes each day worthwhile.
- Sleep. At the end of the day, one of the most important choices we make is prioritizing our sleep. Getting enough shuteye regenerates skin cells, resets the mind, and allows our bodies to get the rest they need to take on another day. Something that many people do not realize is that these unprecedented times have an incredible effect on our bodies. This is due to the heightened feelings of stress. Make sure you’re setting yourself up for success by getting the amount of sleep you need to function each night.
We hope that you found some helpful tips for reclaiming control of your day-to-day. Remember that you’re not alone – we’re all experiencing the weight of this in our own ways, and the effect of the current state of the world has changed the way we need to function each day. Prioritizing your needs is more important now than ever before. We’re rooting for you! You’ve got this.