If you are expecting a baby, or just had a baby, you don't just want to survive these days, you want to live and thrive. Besides the recommendations from the CDC, perhaps the best way to to thrive during this pandemic is to take care of your mind and soul. When you are right in your mind, your body and baby will soon follow.
Get dressed in the morning, like you are going somewhere, even if you are not.
I learned this from FlyLady. "Get dressed to the shoes," she says. And she's right. It's a psychological gift you give yourself that seems to say, "I matter. This day matters. Let's do this."
Block schedule yourself
You will be in a much better mindset if you know what the day will bring. Because right now, we often don't know what the day will bring.
This is not being rigid with time itself, it's giving yourself the gift of routine. It's simply blocks of time- time outside, time reading, time watching tv, cooking time, etc.- that you write down.
Use your phone for phone calls.
Commit to turning your phone off for one hour a day. Don't check the news all the time. Don't be on social media all the time. You don't need to lose your soul.
Some boundaries for yourself are healthy. I recently got an actual newspaper subscription. As the never-ending-news bombarded me over the weekend and into this week, I decided I knew enough for now. I didn't check the news once on Wednesday. When the paper came Thursday, it had all the news I needed to know about the virus. Treat your phone like an object you own, not a best friend that must be with you at all times. Use your phone for good- play scrabble online with your elderly neighbor, call people and actually talk- not text- them. Order a bag of coffee beans delivered to your door from your favorite local coffee shop that is losing thousands of dollars a day (I may or may not be doing this tomorrow.)
How will you put some boundaries on your phone? Or on the amount of news and social media you input every day? Especially right now? Do you need to turn off your phone the moment you finish this post? Possibly. Should you share it first? Yes, possibly.
Solitude and Silence
Every entity in our world is clamoring for your attention online. It's informative and it's destructive, it's essential and it's a distraction, it's comforting and it's stressful. Churches are sharing anxiety-reducing prayers, educational websites are offering online lessons, businesses are calling for your support-- all online. Not to mention the news- and we all want to keep up with the news online as it unfolds literally by the minute. We are all told to stay home for the most part- to keep 6 feet distance, limit groups to 10, and limit travel to essential places. No going to work, no going to the gym, plays, PTA meetings, or church.
If our time is suddenly very free- let's do something remarkable- be free. Be free from noise and distraction and practice an hour of silence- or even just 15 minutes. Be free from the constant company of others and go for an hour walk by yourself- without headphones! Calm the noise down in your head and your heart and your baby will thank you for it. Your body will literally inhale deeply like you've been holding your breath without knowing it.
Get the One-Minute Pause App
Once a day, or even twice, pause and say, "I give everything and everyone to you God." This free app is put out by Ransomed Heart. It is vital.
What are you doing to thrive right now? Do you have an essential soul care items you would add to this list?
Remember to Breathe,