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CoVid has turned the world upside down and 2020 is a year that won’t be soon forgotten. For everything it has made more challenging, one of its blessings has been the chance to revisit old traditions from a new perspective, including New Year’s Resolutions.
Everyone has been through a tough year of lockdowns, sacrifice and loss. What if, this year, you ditch the “should statements” instead for things you would like to do for yourself? Chances are, in the end, you will be a happier and more balanced version of yourself. Isn’t that what resolutions are all about anyway? I propose that 2021 be the year of trading a rigid and military-style approach to setting (and often failing) a goal, for one that is instead focused on self-care, with comfort and joy as essential components of greater well-being.
Here are some way to re-imagine self-care for our present circumstances.
- Incorporate fun, ideally everyday. As some of our traditional “fun” outlets may not be accessible right now, it might require some creativity to rediscover activities you enjoy. Think reading, crafting, playing a game, or strumming your guitar. If travel is your thing, try some virtual tours of places you would like to visit in the future. Whether it is about finding a new hobby, or rediscovering an old one, make a point of putting fun back into your daily routine.
- Move your body – in whatever way inspires you. Go for a walk, wrestle with your kids, do your favourite yoga routine, or jam to 80s dance tunes in your living room.
- De-clutter! We all have things that accumulate in our cupboards, closets and inboxes. Get rid of things you don’t use to lighten up and create space in your life.
- Get creative in the kitchen. Try new recipes and ingredients to quell boredom. The average family rotates the same ten meals – take this as an opportunity to try something new. Make something special you might otherwise not put in the effort to mark special occasions.
- Get comfy. Find a spot in your home where you can relax with a book or a favourite cup of tea. Use favorite throws, cushions, candles and lighting to set the mood to zen out.
- Pamper yourself. Do a DIY facial/mani, exchange foot rubs with a member of your household, take a bath with your favourite essential oils.
- Experience nature. Watch a sunset/sunrise, go for a walk. Being outside is good for the soul.
- Be mindful with social media. Studies show that mindful use of social media – ie using it to strengthen real-life personal relationships may enhance a sense well-being, while using these online tools in a more passive, non-connection-forming way may not. ¹
Sure, eating comfort food and wearing pyjama bottoms all day can be fun, for awhile. However, after nine months of blurred boundaries between workspace and homespace, even that gets tiresome. The reality is CoVid is here to stay. We need to learn how to live with it, and ideally, thrive in spite of it. I hope these suggestions help you find some balance, comfort and joy for a more enjoyable and healthier 2021.
1. Clark, Jenna L, Algoe, Sara B., Green, Melanie C. 2018. Social Network Sites and Well-Being: The Role of Social Connection. Current Directions in Psychological Science Vol. 27(1) 32–37 https://doi.org/10.1177/0963721417730833