We’re all feeling very strange at the moment, but rest assured that this time will pass, life will get back to normal, and we’ll be better people because of it.
We’ll all be busy, the money will come rolling in, and the sun will shine again. I promise!
I’ve been into self-help for about twenty years. I experience very bad bouts of depression, but no matter how low I get, I’d always try my best to dig myself out of that dark hole. It’s hard, and at times I’ve not succeeded, but we have to keep going.
However, I’ve always found it difficult to follow every suggestion from any one self-help book, and at times found them unrealistic. I read something online the other day where they suggested that we all get dressed up to the nines during lockdown (heels and all) and have a date night in the living room. Screw that!
I’m no expert, I just want to share what helps me, and may help you too. My suggestions are simple and easy to dip in and out of.
Don’t feel any pressure…. Just know that if you do want to share, we’re all here to help each other, not judge.
MAKE A LIST:
I love a list, whether it’s with a pen and pad or on my phone. It’s really empowering to tick something off the list and see the list get shorter and shorter.
The upside of being in lockdown, is that we can get all of these jobs done over the next few weeks. How amazing will that be, to start back at work knowing that we have everything in order.
So…make yourself a coffee and relax and start your list. If you’re doing this with pen and paper, write each job under a time heading, 15mins, 30mins, 45 mins, 1hr, 2hr, etc, etc. Your list should contain every single thing that needs doing....house, hobbies, relationships, work, family....everything!
Make a long list of all the jobs (aside from the usual daily cleaning routine), that need doing. This could be as simple as sorting out the towel cupboard, to jet washing your garden, to building a website. The important thing is to break these jobs up into the length of time that you’re going to allow.
Every day, decide how long you want to spend on your ‘To Do’ list, and choose what you’re going to do that day.
So, if you decide you want to spend an hour, you might want to choose one 30 min job and two 15 min jobs. It doesn’t matter….just do what you fancy. By the way, your list shouldn’t be just cleaning jobs.
10 minute jobs:
- Sorting the post
- Calling an elderly neighbour for a chat
15 Minute jobs:
- Sort the towel cupboard
- Send an email
30 minute jobs:
- Change service provider
- Call a close friend for a chat and a laugh
45 minute jobs:
- Update your treatment list and prices.
- File for divorce. Joke!!
2 hr jobs
- Make a new logo or make changes to your website…..colours and fonts.
SET YOUR TIMER
The trick that helps me is to put a time by each ‘to do’ and put the timer on. There are many days that I don’t do this, and I guarantee that things don’t get done.
When you set your timer to do something in say five minutes, or fifteen minutes…..or even seven hours. It keeps you on track and saves you wandering off to do something else.
Each day, include one job you hate, to get it out of the way. So, for example, you’re going to sort out a drawer in the kitchen. Put your timer on for 15mins and go! If you don’t put the timer on, you’ll still be there an hour later with the counters covered with toot, wondering why you started it in the first place.
BREATHE AND DAYDREAM
You can do this any time of the night or day, and as many times as you like, or only once. This will calm you and you’ll notice the benefits quite quickly. If you prefer to follow a guided meditation (I don’t), there are loads online.
- Put your timer on for 10 mins. Sit in a comfortable chair…don’t lay on the bed unless you’re sure that you won’t nod off. You may want to light a candle…do whatever you love to do.
- Close your eyes and place your hand on your chest and start to slowly breathe. Don’t do the deep breathing in through your mouth, and out through your nose ( I find this too distracting…just slow your breathing down. If you wear a fitness watch, you’ll see your heart rate slowing down.
- Daydreaming. Some people call this the Law of Attraction or manifesting (all great), but try calling it daydreaming, because that way you won’t feel the pressure of keeping mood boards, etc. Daydream about the areas of your life that concern you and imagine those scenarios in an upbeat way and how you want them to be. Feel yourself smiling. When you’ve done, just let those thoughts go, knowing that your daydreams will be become reality.
Say Yes and No:
YES: Try saying YES to one thing that you’d usually say no to. That could be because you couldn’t be bothered, or you lack confidence. It doesn’t have to be massive… it could be something as simple as your kids asking you to jump with them on the trampoline, or being asked to try a food that you always say that you don’t like. It could be something massive like agreeing to move house or abroad when all of this is over, but the point is that you’re doing something different.
NO: This takes a lot more guts, because you could offend, but it’s very empowering.
Let’s start with a fairly simple ‘No”. So, if you’re the one in your house that is doing a lot more than everyone else…..say, you’re cleaning, cooking for most of the day when the rest of the family are playing or binge watching telly. When they ask you to get them something ‘as you’re up’….just say ‘Sorry, I’m busy, so can you get it yourself’ then have a sudden hearing loss when they moan. If a client asks you to still treat them during lockdown, just say ‘No, I’m sorry, but I’m following government guidelines and protecting my family’.
HAVE A ROUTINE
Set the alarm…even if it’s for later than you’d usually get up for work.
Shower, dress and spend just 5 mins putting on a tinted moisturiser, blush and mascara. It’ll make us feel better and more motivated.
Put the radio on instead of the telly.
Do 15mins of exercise to music. For those of you who exercise regularly, this may sound laughable, but trust me, it’s a big thing to someone like me who’s used to standing all day, but not actually moving. It’s better than nothing.
Snacking: I’ve lost count of how many Clubs and Hot Cross buns I’ve been eating, so from today, I’m going back to have something to eat first thing, lunch and dinner. I’m going to cook what I like, but watch how I cook it. Do whatever your thing is; calories (my fave), Slimming World, Weight Watchers, Keto…..whatever works for you. The idea is that we become aware of what and why we’re eating and to not gain weight during this time.
STRUCTURE YOUR DAY
I’ve loved this past week, it’s been like Christmas, but I need structure. I’m so used to working on Saturdays, but for now, I’m going to enjoy having a weekend. So, from Monday to Friday, I’m going to do this:-
Set the alarm for 7am instead of 6am.
20 mins: Shower, dry hair, slap on tinted moisturiser, mascaras and blush.
Put the radio on (no telly), have breakfast
Walk my little dog Chancey round the block
Do 15 mins of exercise to music
Choose things off of my ‘To Do’ list for that day.
When they’re done, I’m going to relax and do sod all….after all, it’s not very often that we get a chance like this to do nothing but relax and re-invent ourselves.
I’m going to try to post one new suggestion for you each day.
I hope you find this of some help.
Good luck. Kim xx