TODAY I just finished watching Episode 18 of the first season of Arthdal Chronicles on Netflix. It’s a must-watch Korean historical epic series, I should honestly say. Skim through the positive reviews (and all the spoilers) online before you binge-watch because the first few episodes run short of a thrill.
Since the past weeks, I have included watching Netflix movies and series in my daily routines – the self-care practices to share here – so to maintain such a mental health amidst the COVID-19 lockdown.
I tell you this ahead – I am not a psychologist – but I have units in Psychology (as what most of us would have), along with Educational Guidance and Counseling, during my undergraduate days. I could have written more in-depth self-improvement and adulting articles here if I earned more of such units. Self-care however is more of a personal, intimate thing that does not require these for one to write about and understand it.
What really is self-care? Self-care in essence is the mindful taking of time to pay attention to you, not in a narcissistic way, but in a way that ensures that you are being cared for by you – Maria Baratta, Psychology Today.
Self-care is not just about your mental health. It’s also about caring for your physical self, by eating healthy, taking adequate sleep, caring about your hygiene, exercising regularly, etc – Noma Nazish, Forbes.
The strep throat was a harsh reminder that self-care isn’t something you do once and tick off the list. It’s the constant repetition of many tiny habits, which together soothe you and make sure you’re at your optimum — emotionally, physically, and mentally — Ellen Bard, Tiny Buddha.
BREAKING: President Duterte has approved the recommendation to extend the quarantine from April 12 to 11:59pm of April 30, COVID-19 task force spokesperson says https://t.co/RU2uXXAhfm pic.twitter.com/yONKreqS2J
— CNN Philippines (@cnnphilippines) April 7, 2020
1| Stick to Your Daily Productive Routine. You get yourself — your mind and body — confused when you leave your daily schedule corrupted. I highly recommend that you discipline yourself particularly about your sleep and wake-up routines. No doubt the lockdown brings you a reasonable break from the eight-to-five daily grind that you’ve since been longing for, but oversleeping ruins productivity. You will end up regretting the days that you miss doing productive things. Regret, I tell you, translates to a profound feeling of failure.
2| Balance Your Household Tasks and Your ‘Me’ Time. Completing household tasks — decluttering your workstation at home, preparing meals, water-changing aquariums, and cleaning the floor and kitchen cupboards among others — brings a sense of self-accomplishment and a feel of a conducive living environment. You might also want to consider NYC maid services to help you in the decluttering.
It’s not enough though. You also need a few minutes each day to pause and reflect on the other meanings of your life while still on a quarantine. Like what I do, I also take time recalling what shortcomings I had in the past, where I am now in my personal and professional growth, and how I will be able to realize what I still aspire to do and become.
3| Boost Your Immune System. You need to boost your immune system and get the army in you prepared for the possible attack of the coronavirus. You don’t know when this attack will happen. Yes, you may seem totally fed up by these pieces of health advice — getting enough sleep, eating healthy meals, drinking plenty of water and juices, maintaining hygiene, doing regular physical exercise, and skipping vices — but I couldn’t discount them because they are all indispensable. After all, self-care starts with one’s satisfaction of such basic physiological needs.
4| Pursue a Peaceful and Positive Vibe. In the previous article I penned, I came up with a list of 14 Best and Worst Things People Do on Social Media Amidst the Lockdown and described these online platforms as causing too much stress. Keep yourself away from these stressors. You can find your peace of mind as you push doing even the simple things that bring you happiness such as pursuing your home-based hobbies, building an open communication with the rest of the family, and initiating recreational activities with them.
5| Get Things Organized and Control Your Worries. What makes you even more stressed is your fear of both the known and the unknown. You’re worried that your household finances might anytime collapse, or your food supplies might not make it through the days. You’re afraid that you might have been infected after going to the grocery the other day. Getting things organized and making yourself prepared with all the contingencies for the worst-case scenarios bring you such peace of mind. Don’t forget to utter your prayers too. Prayers feed the soul. In the end, it’s not bad at all to worry about the unpredictable things or those beyond your control, but you shouldn’t wallow in it rather take it as a motivation to prepare yourself at all costs.
6| Broaden Your Knowledge and Learn New Things. Apart from getting intimate with stuff, finding time for practical knowledge can be best added to the self-care practices. Whether through watching educational and entertaining YouTube videos, reading self-help books, or preparing lessons for the resume of classes, there are lots of things to learn. As you welcome more opportunities for these, you also keep on storing new mental schema with each encounter with a piece of information, something that can be retrieved for productive and practical applications in the future.