SMALL HABITS TO BUILD A RESILIENCE MINDSET IN A PANDEMIC
Hi, I’m Aalé from Happy To Get Healthy!
I’m a Certified Holistic Health Coach & Wellness Advocate and I’d love to share my story with you…
Up until my early 30s, my only focus was my career, and consequently my health went to the bottom of my priority list. I went through life tired, with sleeping issues, and continually in a state of stress and ill health. My diet was marred with processed foods and exercise was a source of punishment. I was frustrated and unhappy with how I felt and what I saw in the mirror.
My journey to reclaiming my health over the last few years has been gradual, with a fair few ups and downs. What I’ve learned is that creating small, realistic incremental habits leads to long term change. And it all starts with empowering yourself to take care of YOU.
But it’s not enough to only focus on your nutrition or movement. Your health doesn’t exist in compartments. It’s not just about what’s on your plate, and squeezing those workouts in— it’s about your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. These components are all interconnected with each other in a deep way.
I help busy women tap in, understand who they are and what their body needs on an individual level to thrive, and to simplify the whole process in the face of suboptimal conditions. I work to cultivate intrinsic motivation, resilience and confidence to build sustainable positive lifestyle habits. My is focus is particularly towards women of colour who are also dealing with stressors associated with cultural traditions, values and expectations.
We have been living in uncertain times, and whilst we have no control over our circumstances, we can control our daily habits, our choices and mindset. A big part of this is going back to fundamentals to build resilience and fortitude to carry us through from day to day.
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Here are 5 small habits to develop mental fortitude to face the ‘new normal’ with greater clarity, motivation and well-being.
Develop Meaningful Connections
Being physically distant from someone doesn’t mean you have to be emotionally distant too. Humans are social beings and we need to feel loved and cared for. It gives us a sense of purpose and makes us stronger. Schedule in fun activities like virtual group quizzes or even combine movement with connection by phoning a friend whilst you are on your daily walk. Reaching out to those who are vulnerable is a good idea too as this act of service helps boost your emotional well-being.
This time is also a great opportunity to reconnect with an old school friend or colleague, as well as build new connections through online groups that share similar interests to you.
How much we invest in to taking care of our bodies directly affects our ability to cope with daily aggressors.
Restorative sleep works to regulate, reboot and reduce our stress levels and boost our immunity. Focus on getting in to bed and waking up at regular times, limiting blue light exposure in the evenings and taking regular pauses during the day so your brain can process things. This will help you minimise overthinking at night.
If you find including exercise in to your day challenging, try attaching small movements to activities that are a regular part of your day. For e.g. 20 squats whilst the kettle boils. Let lockdown limitations bring out your creative side. Go for a bike ride with your kids or try a virtual workout. Even as little as 5 minutes of movement daily can help to reduce cortisol levels (stress hormone) and boost your endorphins (feel good hormone). The min-body connect is very real.
Living and working in the same space means 24/7 access to the refrigerator which can give way to unhealthy habits like all-day grazing. Think about how you can set yourself up to choose healthier alternatives like restocking your pantry with whole, real foods instead of processed foods which cause inflammation and affect your mood. They can also cause lethargy and mind fog.
Plan Things To Look Forward To
Cultivating hope is a key element to help with carrying you from one day to the next. Planning small things like a walk and coffee with a friend, an online class, a new recipe or hobby bring a sense of excitement and newness to your daily routine. Personally, I find that it keeps me motivated to work hard so I can reward myself with something I truly enjoy.
Shifting in to a gratitude mind-set can be challenging if you feel frustrated and overwhelmed. But just by tuning in and noticing things around you, you bring awareness to your attention, and this helps to shed perspective and more appreciation for basic things like food, hot water, a roof over your head, which are a privilege for so many.
It’s also a good idea to journal things like what you love about yourself, what you are grateful for and what you are looking forward to. Writing helps regulate emotions, reduce stress and bring clarity. All these contribute to building a more positive mind space.
Reframe Negative Thoughts
With a global pandemic comes additional and unanticipated responsibilities, particularly for working Mums. Juggling a career, home schooling, looking after your family and yourself, as well as domestic responsibilities is daunting and can seem too much to handle. But perceiving situations in a different light can help. For example instead of thinking about how tough it is to teach your child a subject, focus on the delightful parts of your child’s development and the precious time you are getting to bond with your child, which you wouldn’t have had otherwise. Ask yourself what is this experience teaching me? How can I grow from this?
If you are interested in knowing more about health coaching and want to discuss your wellness goals and concerns further with me, please visit my website www.happytogethealthy.com and feel free to set up a complimentary consultation or email me on email@example.com
With so much love,