At-Home Self-Care Guide
By Shabna Cader
Uncertain times, in my mind, calls for some much needed self-care. And, why not? I think we often tend to forget to take care of our own selves, especially when we need it most.
It might not be on the top of your priority list right now, but it should be somewhere on it at least. For, if we do not tend and care for ourselves, how can we expect to have the energy and the right frame of mind to take care of others - our loved ones?
At a time when time itself seems to go nowhere, its best to create a simple routine. A time to wake up, a time to take a much deserved shower and cleanse, a time to feed your body, a time to nourish your soul with some form of exercise, a time to be proactive and productive, and a time to relax and unwind. Believe that there is much that you can do in your home, and this belief will become a reality when you set yourself up with a routine.
You do not have to wake up at the crack of dawn. Give yourself some grace, some much appreciated sleep and rest but wake up at a reasonable hour. Stretch your body.
Take a few sips of water. Wake yourself up in the most loving way. Take a few deep breaths, and you are well on your way towards a good day.
Leave your phone aside for a while. Perhaps you'd look at it to read the news or to check the time. That's alright. Leave it aside afterwards.
Sit yourself down on a comfortable seat. This could be cross-legged on the floor, against a wall or panel, upright on your bed or even on a chair or sofa. Take your pick, clear your mind and breathe deeply.
You do not have to sit here for a lengthy period of time, but start off with at least five minutes of your morning. You may start to notice and focus on many thoughts, but that's okay.
Acknowledge them, and move pass them. Come back to your breath. Once you are done, take a few more sips of water. What you choose to do after is up to you.
For me, it's rolling out my mat and practicing yoga. This is not just to stay fit, to waste away time, but to clear my mind, move my body and find what feels good.
A healthy body equals a healthy immune system, and that equals a great deal in today's world. Whatever exercise you like to engage in, do it now. Do it for a minimum of 20 minutes. You've got all day, so what's a few minutes worth to you?
Continue to take sips of even gulps of water throughout the day, especially after you workout. Feed your body good, clean food.
I know you and I cannot tend to be fussy about food choices right now, but let's keep a positive attitude towards feeding yourself either way. Whatever you are up to making for the day, feed yourself some carbs, protein and nutrients.
If like me, you are working from home, take a moment to appreciate the fact itself that you are able to work from home.
Practice gratitude in this time, for the many things we have taken for granted - the internet connection, a computer or laptop, the ability to read and type (write), a job that continues to pay - for many around our little island are left without the above. What a blessing it is to have these luxuries in our lives.
A little gratitude goes a long way. This will set up your mind and frame of thought towards also being more appreciative of the work that you do and your productivity.
If you are seated at a desk, occasionally take the time to sit back, stretch, move your arms, shoulders and feet. A good flow of blood circulation will help you continue to stay productive and mindful.
Every now and then, I like to give myself an at-home beauty treatment. This could range from a foot soak (I use a basin, some warm water and essential oils), a face mask (a concoction of one egg, honey and olive oil or any oil you've got at home would do) and even a body scrub (ground coffee and oil).
This isn't an indulgence. This is almost a necessity as a means to tend to yourself - your body. It isn't a so-called luxurious beauty routine. It is a simple way in which you can nourish your skin and in turn, make yourself feel good.
When work is done, give yourself permission to relax. Unwind in any way or form that you like. Watch a movie or television series. Get creative - draw, dance, paint, sculpt. Pick up a book and immerse yourself in it. Journal your thoughts and ideals.
Experiment in the kitchen with whatever you have. Clean your living space. Air it out. Change the bed linen. Rearrange your room. Whatever it may be, it'll give a change in perspective.
When the day comes to an end, once again count your blessings. You have a roof above your head. A bed to climb into. The ability to take a cold or warm shower. Even the mobile phone you hold in your hand.
I also hope, it is the loved ones you keep near and safe. When we tend to our mind and body, we not only keep ourselves sane, safe and well, but those around us who matter sane, safe and well too.