Letting the light in: micro wellness tips to get through lockdown

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When the world feels like it’s fallen over, and you’re confined to the same four walls 24/7, finding the energy to do anything can feel incredibly difficult at the moment (if you’re living in the UK in the midst of winter).

Maybe you’ve only got enough energy to binge eat Kettle chips and lay on the sofa watching Netflix — and that’s okay.

After working remotely for almost six years now, some of which when I was pretty unwell, I had to find tiny ways to feel more energised when everything felt bleak. I was isolated, and without social contact — it was easy to get down. When my body was healing, I had to just stay indoors and hope for the best.

It’s not your time that matters; it’s your energy.

Without energy, you can’t create. So at the moment, as things feel like they’re crumbling around us, many of us are turning inwards and going into energy conservation mode.

Here’s a few ways I’ve found that bring a little bit of light and vibrancy into your day.

Introduce nature into your space

Never underestimate the power of some fresh cut flowers or plants to brighten you up if you’re feeling down. If you’re living in a concrete jungle, creating a space that feels close to nature is inherently energising, according to biophilia research.

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They’re good for the soul.

Clear your mind

Just 20 minutes of an Insight Timer or half an hour of guided meditations can take you away from the chaos of the outer world, into the beautiful peace of your inner world.

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If you’re feeling especially frazzled after a long day of back to back Zoom meetings, a meditation session can bring you back into the present and give you a boost of energy before the evening.

To raise your energy, frequently clear the mental decks. Give your brain a rest. Clear all of those mental thought cookies, and clear the cache of your overstimulated brain.

Walk in beautiful spaces

If the sun is shining, a walk in nature is the best prescription. Let the sunlight fall on your face. Let it warm your skin.

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If you can head near trees, do that. Breathe in the oxygen they give off. Look at the leaves. Feel your toes crunching on the frosty ground.

Look up at the sky. Notice the patterns of the clouds. See the tiny droplets of dew on the grass.

Notice the beauty.

Make a point of seeing how much beauty you can pay attention to in a 30 or 60 minute walk.

Let go of worry

If being in nature is one of the most energising things we can do, worry is one of the most draining. It literally saps us of our life force. We can see it on our faces. Our bodies scrunch and tighten. We get more aches and pains.

It’s not easy to let go of worry, especially in today’s world, but we can try to reframe our thoughts and realise we have a choice about what story we choose to tell ourselves.

Source: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Wholehearted-School-Counseling

If you can’t control it, you deserve freedom from thinking about it.

Breathe

I found a fantastic YouTube channel recently, called Take A Deep Breath. Obviously since Wim Hof’s popularity has exploded in recent times in the Western World, many are using breathwork to experiment with raised energy.

Deep breathing is SUCH an energiser, and it’s a really exciting and fascinating area of exploration for the wellness field. (Not to mention it’s potentials for increased arousal).

When you’re feeling murky and low on energy levels, try setting aside 20 minutes for deep breathing. I love deep breathing whilst watching something on Youtube or tv. I usually try something similar to the box breath — in for five, hold for five, out for five, hold for five.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7F4P45I7Xo

Set boundaries on draining activities

I was on a workshop the other day, when people were talking about what gave them the most distractions and drained their energy.

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Out of over 200 people, the chat window was buzzing with the same comments -

‘My phone’ ‘Social Media’ ‘Notifications’ ‘Doom scrolling’

Just like any unhealthy activity, person or situation, you’ll know that it’s unhealthy by how you feel afterwards.

Is it sucking the life out of you?

Pumping you full of fear and stress?

Do you feel better restricting it to very small doses? Then do that.

After all, doomscrolling is so 2020.

Clean your space

Nothing is more stress-inducing than piles of laundry and lots of dirty dishes. When you’re fed up, bored and just want to GO OUT, I get that the last thing you want to do is to have a cleaning session.

But to have things sparkling clean will energise you. To have your space refreshed will make you feel better, even just a tiny bit.

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Why not mix up your furniture? Move your bed somewhere else, like you used to as a kid? I’ve found that physical change always brings renewed energy and a fresh perspective.

Introduce scents and new textures

Adding scents can really change the mood of the same four walls. I haven’t QUITE got the spare funds for a Moodo, yet there’s something intensely captivating about trying different scents to give you a bit of extra pep. Frangipani to remind me of Bali. A Neroli face oil. Lavender on my pillow. A zesty lemon to use first thing in the morning.

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The smell of cut grass. Your morning coffee. You can get just about any scent bottled these days, so if you’re climbing the four walls under lockdown, try experimenting with your olfactory senses.

Textures are also a good shout. Think Hygge like atmosphere — fluffy socks, a weighted blanket, an orthopedic pillow.

Whatever feels nourishing and supportive.

Feel

Lastly, If you just need to spend a day in bed feeling sad, take the time to do that. Crying can actually be good for you. Don’t resist or numb your feelings, feel what you need to, even if that is feeling rather sad right now.

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What you resist persists, so acknowledging what you’re feeling can actually help you feel energised in the long term — you’re not spending all your energy running from those uncomfortable feelings.

Remember, we’re all in this together — no matter how big or small, we’re all feeling the collective grief.

Freelance Copywriter | Experiments in #lifestyledesign, #productivity and #flow. Occasional #poet. Get in touch: www.kerryneeds.com

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