My Top 5...
This blog was initially supposed to be my Top 5 Tips for Senior Sessions. However, since our world has been rocked lately, I decided to put that one on the shelf for a week or two and instead share with you a different top 5.
In January of 2018, I became ill. For the next several months, it was a mystery as to what was wrong with me and a lot was left in the unknown. I was unable to teach, I was unable to read, I was unable to watch tv, and basic daily tasks left me frustrated and unfinished. For four months, I was essentially going through what we are going through now. I learned a lot during this time and wanted to share with you my Top 5 Tips for Surviving Quarantine.
#5: Check in on your people
Being quarantined is a change for so many people but being quarantined alone can be so isolating. While I wasn’t alone (six months into my new marriage) I was alone for most of the day and felt like the world was passing me by. Getting phone calls or text messages meant so much to me. When someone would stop by to check on me and give a big hug (we CANNOT do this right now) my day would be made. These little gestures go so much further than you think. While we can’t swing by and check in on each other, we can: call, text, FaceTime, do a curb check, or Zoom. My 5th tip for surviving this, is to reach out and check in with those in your circle and make sure they’re doing ok!
#4: Brain Games
At the beginning, this can be a nice change of pace. For me, I was used to going 100 mph all the time and very rarely ever slowed down to rest and recharge. I thought this would be a time of catching up on all those shows I wanted to watch, clean those darn baseboards, or read that stack of books I’d been collecting. However, I wasn’t able to do any of those things. After the first week or two, the thought of relaxing very quickly turned into what is happening and when is it going to end. I learned that I have to keep my brain stimulated. This can be done several different ways. There are a ton of brain game apps (Lumosity is a fun one). Read (if you don’t like to read, try Audible!). Work on a puzzle or coloring sheet (these are constantly requiring decisions to be made). Cooking (find a new recipe!) Just make sure your brain is in a position to make decisions and use critical thinking skills. Keep your brain active!
Just like it is important for your brain to be active, it is also important to keep your body active! Couch surfing champion is not the title you want at the end of this! While gyms may be closed right now, there are several other ways to stay active. This week is supposed to be beautiful! Getting out for a long walk, a run, dusting off that ol bike, or even gardening are all great physical activities! On days where getting outside can flare up those allergies or its too cold, you’ve got online options too! Daily Burn is an online studio based in NYC, each day (prior to all of this) they streamed a 30 minute workout. If you don't have any weights or equipment, that's ok! Each workout is designed for you to do at home with little to no equipment. Now, they are offering 60 days free to use the old daily workouts as well as access to their library. They have different programs: yoga, mobility, kickboxing. Their trainers are awesome, and I have used this website for years! Keep moving people!
#2 Check in with YOU
Yall…this is weird, this is scary, and this could go on for quite some time. I cannot stress how important it is to check in with yourself. I call it my body scan. I sit in a reclined position and start at my toes and work my way up. “Toes, how we doing today?” “Good? Alright!” “Hey arches, everybody ok down there?” “Wohoo!” It usually isn’t until I get to my heart or my head that something is up and that is where I stop and address what is going on. Right now, there are a lot of stressers, anxieties, and worries that are going on. It is so important to acknowledge them and understand where they are coming from. Yes, I am worried. But what am I worried about? Is it coming from a health standpoint, am I worried about jobs, or am I worried about my loved ones. I address each of these feelings and make a choice to be hopeful as I move on to my next section. I choose to be hopeful that this will end, I choose to be hopeful and see the good that is coming out of this, I choose to be hopeful that humanity will be better as a result. I choose hope. It is also with this scan that I also do my daily meditations and prayers. I have been following along with the Bible in One Year app and it is a great way to finish up your check-in!
#1: Keep a ROUTINE
This is number one for a reason! It is so incredibly important to keep your life as normal as possible! Waking up and going to bed at your normal time, sticking with three meals a day, exercising, taking a shower AND actually getting dressed. Each one of these is so important. It is so easy to start staying up later and eating whatever and whenever you want. However, it is with experience that I tell you these things don’t work out well in the long run! We all crave a routine and it is during times like this when we have to keep our routine as normal as possible in this new normal. While someday's it can be challenging, I promise it does help.
Honorable Mention: Laugh
The best thing to come out of these past few weeks have certainly been all the memes. Finding a moment or two each day to laugh is also very important. Go back and listen to your favorite comedians, watch some videos, or do a deep dive into all these memes. But pleeeeeease, make time in your routine to laugh…every day!
I know this isn’t as fun as getting ready for your Senior Session, but hopefully it helps. Communities are so important right now, and please know I am thankful for each and everyone of you!