We’ve all been there, woken up and just thought, “I can’t wait for this day to end.” The days where the only thing appealing seems to be lying in bed or on the sofa all day long. There are many self-help books out there with tricks and tips of how to avoid these days and pick yourself up. They usually include constant actions that you need to do day in day out, with the promise that you will feel better.
In my opinion writing 3 things I’m grateful for at the end of the day to ‘make myself feel better’ is just something I really (really) don’t want to do on a day where I can hardly be bothered to get out of bed. Although I know activities like this can help, and probably will, I seem to always avoid them on down days. This left me thinking, what are ways we can help ourselves to make days like these just a little bit easier?
I find that first giving yourself a break and being kind to yourself is the first step to take. Allow yourself to lie in bed for longer than neccessary or sit on the sofa in your pjs all day. Remind yourself that it’s okay to be sad sometimes. Just be wary not to do this day in, day out because otherwise some unhealthy habits (and thoughts) can form. Just tell yourself, “today I’m going to give myself a break and do what feels accessible for myself right now, but then tomorrow I will pick myself back up again.” This way you have allowed yourself and mind to relax and know that today is a mental health day, and that’s okay!
I’ve made a list of 5 little things that I do for myself, that I thought I will share with you.
1. Holding my own hand, this may sounds strange but it provides the comfort that you have yourself to get you through this, because let’s face it, you’re going to be with yourself forever so you may as well support yourself through life.
2. Yin Yoga, although this can sometimes be too much effort for down days, whilst practicing Yin Yoga it requires holding stretches for 1-2 minutes which can be extremely calming as your mind often goes to the feelings the stretches influence on the body.
3. Embroidery, of anything, this again may be too much for days like these but if you’re feeling a little more energetic or creative, this is a great way to distract your mind from your crazy thoughts!
4. Worry period, this is a very helpful technique that my sister told me about, you set a time in the day where you’re allowed to worry, for example between the hours of 5pm and 6pm. This enables you to put those worries to the side until it’s time to ‘worry,’ but usually by the time 5pm comes you either miss the ‘worry period’ or you don’t feel like thinking about that worry anymore.
5. See a friend, try to see or talk to a friend, it is obvioysly more challenging right now with the whole COVID-19 thing but even a call or FaceTime can help take your mind off things.
Feel free to try any of the above, or not! Just remember, be kind to yourself.
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Gabrielle Spooner // 19th November 2020