Here’s a new perspective on Valentine’s Day: Self-Love! If life in lockdown is taking its toll we’re here to remind you of how special you are. Taking care of your mind, body and soul is the best route to happiness. Whether you’re single, married, home-schooling your frustrated family or living away from your other half, it’s time to focus just on you. Take a look at these simple ways to practice self-love and improve your well-being each week.
Say Yes to Yoga
During lockdown it’s important to take time to stay active and maintain wellbeing in any way possible. Yoga is a great way to do that from your own front room! Just 15 minutes of yoga a day can alter your brain chemistry and boost your mood, transforming your mental and physical health in so many ways. Studies have shown that yoga can decrease the secretion of cortisol (the primary stress hormone), which in turn can improve your overall health. What’s more, making yoga part of your daily routine can benefit your flexibility, muscle strength and tone.
If you’re working from home or spending large parts of your day sitting, yoga stretches can help improve your posture and loosen you up. The benefits are clear and finding yoga classes or tutorials on YouTube is easy. Here’s a few top tips to help you get started.
Yoga can be a pretty intense workout so fuel your body with something before you start but keep it light. An energy bar or pre-workout snack 30 minutes before should help; plus, don’t forget to drink a full glass of water.
Call a Friend
It’s human nature to seek contact with others. We’re social creatures by habit and so not seeing friends of family can be challenging. But remember that you’re not alone. Thankfully in this modern digital age, we can be better connected with those we love even when we’re not together. So pick up the phone, power up your laptop or type a text to someone and check in to see how they’re doing. Most likely they’re feeling similar to you and so a chat will do you both good. Fed up of Zoom quizzes and video-dropouts? Go old school and write someone a letter.
For many of us the stress, restriction and inactivity of lockdown brings about a bad cocktail that over time can impact your physical health. We eat for all sorts of reasons and snacking can be a sign that you are thirsty, bored, anxious or sad. Eating a healthy and balanced diet is not just beneficial for your physical health, but the right kinds of food can also boost your brain power, immune system and mood. Here are a few tips to help you eat well.
Searching for an escape? Any budding bookworm will tell you that sticking your nose into a good story is the perfect remedy. Scientific studies have shown that reading stimulates the brain and engages your imagination. This leads to a boost in your mood, a lowering of stress levels and an improvement in how you focus. From adventure stories and cultural classics, to brilliant biographies and dastardly whodunits, lose yourself in the pages of a good book. Not your thing? Download a podcast or audiobook and let them do the talking while you relax.
Get Some Fresh Air
Lockdown can feel like you’re locked up; but remember that fresh air is not off limits. Stepping outdoors for a local walk or bike ride can have both physical and mental benefits. Oxygen is essential in maintaining healthy brain function and growth. When a person takes a walk outside, the increased levels of oxygen can actually improve brain function and concentration. Studies have also shown that spending time in nature actually reduces stress by lowering your heart rate and giving you time to clear your head. Powerful endorphins are produced which are great for regulating your mood and giving you that positive feeling. So what are you doing sat here reading this? Head outdoors and get your recommended daily dose of FRESH AIR!
From Me, To Me
How often to you prioritise yourself? Setting aside ‘Me Time’ is the best self-love present you can give yourself. Forget the excuses and the busy schedule; set aside time each day where you simply do something that you love. Listen to your favourite track and dance around the living room, find a quiet space and meditate, or soak in a sensationally bubbly bath. Me Time is personal and a great way to recharge your batteries.
Reserve a little love for yourself this Valentine’s day and make the most of the time you can spare each day to practice some ‘self-love’. How do you look after your wellbeing? Share you tips with us.