"Respect your body. Fuel your body. Challenge your body. Move your body. And most of all, love your body."
I am sure there are many articles, tricks, and tips how to make the most of the current lockdown (such as mine from the past :-)), how to stay mentally and physically fit, or what creative activities you can do when staying and working from home. Irrespective of a pandemic or not, we have already explored the benefits of generally having a routine (e.g. testing the 5AM Club`s 20/20/20 model) and looking after your wellbeing (e.g. not checking your phone in the morning). And yet, I have made personal observations what else can creep into your day, leading to a lockdown fatigue (in most countries, people live in a complete lockdown since November (or earlier) until open end). So let me share with you three more findings to help you get through the winter, when the weather also can add more to our low mood.
1. Don`t read the news or read only the necessary news at the right place and the right time
As I have told you, I have stopped reading news for a long time. It wasn`t a really big decision, it just happened that I realized it doesn`t add too much of a value to my life. As a teenager, I used to love absorbing the news and reading literally every section from politics, sports, celebrities. I liked how this expanded my horizon and invited me to fields unknown or unfamiliar to me. It also gave me a snapshot of what is currently relevant to society and what is happening on the world stage.
This started to change when a few of the personal development bloggers, that I followed, shared that they stopped reading the news. Of course, one part of me wondered, "Is this even possible? To not follow what is going on in the world? What about missing important events or exposing to others that you are not informed?". But their rationale made sense. They stopped following the news because news can just really spread negative energies, fear, and hatred. While it is important to know about the world problems, such as hunger, wars, or discriminations, to also not only stay in your cozy bubble, I realized that it can make a difference HOW you read these news and not only WHAT it is you consume. When reading the news unconsciously, you can literally feel like the world is about to go down, that you cannot trust anyone else, and that you have to be alert at all times.
What makes the news a bit questioning, too, is that there is an undeniable tendency towards more negative (often sensational) news than positive. So our perceptions grow a negative world view, too, which makes it even more difficult with our ego in mind which already looks 24/7 for the next problem anyway. What also motivated me to stop reading the news was the fact that I realized that those pepole who although reading the news, they sometimes don`t understand the topic in depth or are not able to lead constructive discussions. When reading the news, often our ego and head are activated, wanting to be right and superior. I had one former friend who craved for discussions and debates, but as soon as we started one, it was frustrating because she was not genuinely interested to hear other perspectives, but to actually just release her emotions and views that have been triggered by the news.
All in all, see what real value the news bring to your life. Better act out of curiosity than fear, for example, if you fear you are missing out, then follow your curiosity instead of fear - what topics interest you? Which outlets do you appreciate for their insights? For example, I am subscribed to the United Nations newsletter, that keep me up to date on the word`s challenges, without the sensational distractions. During the whole pandemic, I haven´t read the news once, it was more than sufficient and effective to read the government`s official sites with the latest developments and rules (and have your friends and family already update you because they had to release their worries, too).
2. Turn on your favorite music and DANCE!
Yesterday, I started reading Oprah Winfrey`s book "What I Know for Sure" and one essay stuck with me (although all of her essays are captivating). She said her wish for her readers was the following quote that guided her through life: "And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance." Sometimes it is about taking life less seriously, and just enjoy the moment, that we can all create instantly. Put on your favorite music, even if only for one song or the entire playlist, and dance like no one`s watching! You will soon realize how amazing you feel afterwards, how your level of joy is rising, and how uplifted you are for your next endeavor. You have nothing to lose and can always find time for a 3min song - it is like taking this short break to go to the bathroom. Similar to the body`s urge to release liquids, your body also urges to move, enjoy, and relax.
Another great channel to release your fatigue is to look for humour. There are so many social media accounts nowadays that you can follow or YouTube / TikTok videos whose only objective is to make you laugh (my favorites remain James Corden or Jimmy Fallon). Obviously, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Disney have tons of comedy shows for you to laugh out loud, too.
3. Get some fresh air - oxygen - into your lungs
When the weather is dry after the current rainy trend, I used to go for a short run (don`t ask me how long or far I run, it would make you laugh!). Already with the first step outside, my body not only feels awake, but also I feel refreshed from breathing cold, fresh air. It also seems that my skin appreciates the fresh air, and whenever I come home, I arrived at a different level of energy and more open mindset.
Often when we are inside at home during winter, we tend to stay in our cozy warm environment. Our mind or lazy self may exaggerate that it would be too cumbersome to put on a jacket or that you don`t have enough time. You don`t have to go for a marathon, you don`t also even have to change your clothes much (it is lockdown, so no one will bother or even have the samy pyjama like you on) - it is more than enough and a game-changer if you just get some fresh air for a few minutes, e.g. by opening and standing at your window (imagine you have to walk your dog, who will literally get crazy if you don`t go outside with them). Also, this is your practice to take care of your needs and wellbeing.
Bonus: Connect - really and deeply
What has made a huge difference in my life is to connect with people, both with known and unknown faces. I have enrolled in online courses (such as the Portfolio Collective) and the online communities (such as London Writers` Salon), and I have realized connections really make a difference in my life. I also take it seriously, meaning consciously, in that I don`t do anything in parallel when listening to other people. Similar as I would appreciate others listening to me, I give them the same gift. And you will be amazed by how people start to open up, share something that touches or resonates with you, or expand your horizon and perspectives on opportunities.
Do you already have your tools to get through winter lockdown? Let me know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org – I very look forward to hearing from you! :)PS: Subscribe to my #mindfulmagic Newsletterto stay in touch for upcoming posts, free offers, and news :)
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