It’s slowly beginning to happen. The world is reopening. And fingers crossed this time it’s going to stick. But how are you going to cope with it and take care of your mind, body spirit as reopening begins?
Lock down was a huge shock to our system. Overnight EVERYTHING changed.It shook us to the core mind, body and spirit. And now we have got used to, and in somecases enjoyed, the slower pace of life that came with it.
Even though re-opening is not going to happen in the same sudden way we are about to go through another change. Are you ready for it in your body, mind and spirit?
Let’s face it life before lockdown wasn’t great for mind, body, spirit was it?
Pre lockdown the majority of us had an exsitence of a hybrid hamster / merry go round. Hustle and bustle, community, supermarkets, packed lunches, water cooler chats, social activites, training centers, after school clubs. It was a whirl. And we used to get dressed everyday to do it. – WOW we were amazing!
Pre-lockdown not many of us prioritised our mind, body spirit practices sustainably which is something many people have been doing under lockdown.
And although of course the world is not going to be going at full pace during reopening. The restrictions are rightfully not all gone. But some of those things are returning. Added to which we have all the restrictions to think of on top.
Which means more than ever we need to prioritise mind, body, spirit throughout 2021.
And to do that sustainably we need to do some preperation not try and switch suddenly overnight.
So how can we prepare our mind body & spirit to be ready for re-opening?
Here are my 5 top tips to prepare your mind, body and spirit for re-opening to avoid the crash and keep your mental health balance in the ‘new normal’
retrain for life outside of home
One of my favourite part of lockdown has been the lack of commute. It has added an hour of sleep to my day, time for a morning routine and extra quality time with my family. Once that commute comes back EVERYTHING will change. So I am practicing now. Adjusting my body clock to the sleep pattern it will need, preparing lunches even though I am at home. Even the make up, get dressed routine. At first when I started to retrain this I was like ‘how did I ever do this in 30 mins without a time turner?!?’ It literally took me forever. Now I am rocking on to 40 mins. And through some simplifying and systemising I have even managed to get some of my morning routine into the ‘new normal’ work schedule. And if you have small kids believe me you will thank yourself for retraining the get out of the door routine in advance.
don't be a time optimist
Where as once before I could hit 3 shops in 10 mins before catching my train home under new regulations that is going to take much, much longer. Everything has slowed down in shops, workplaces, drive throughs, GP appoinments due to the logistics of working within the safty restrictions. This is going to slow you down. Instead of thinking I can get 30 things done today take it down to 8 and plan sometime buffers into your day. Don’t try and hit the ground running cause you are gonna trip and smash your head on the pavement.
Simplify. Simplify. simplfy.
Wherever you can simplify and systemise. Food prep, shopping, choosing your work wardrobe etc can all be systemised. You know how when you have been sick and you going back to work everything is exhausting? Well going back to life outside the home is probably going to be the same. If you can cut down on your decision fatigue by simplifying and systemising parts of your life you will have more mental energy. Creating a pattern for your week is one of the best gifts you can give yourself during reopening. You can find some more ideas here
Pre-empt Covid ptsd & anxiety
Now Covid PTSD might sound like a bit of an extreme way to describe post-lockdown. But onlarge we, as in society, has been through something pretty traumatic. And trauma leaves a residue of PTSD. It could be something like dealing with a colleague who has different Covid values to you or feeling overly anxious on the bus, knowing who you can hug or not and how the heck do you now refuse those annoying family gatherings and social activities you used Covid as the easy and understandable excuse for. Mr T and I our making our own intergration plan to help us decide how we want to re-join the world and I highly reccomend you do the same. Think through things that might tigger anxiety, conflict or stress and work out how to deal with them before they happen will help ease the ptsd and anxiety as life rolls on.
Prioritise your mental health every day
Although we may have missed those watercooler chats the fact is we are not used to so much social stimulation anymore. Or sensory stimulation for that matter. This can and will send your mind and body into overload. So even 5 -10 mins of positive me time a day will boost your nervous system and give you the break you need. And I mean positive me time. Not binge watching netflix, playing candy crush or swiping through tik tok. I am talking about 5 minutes reading, meditation, taking a walk and making sure that you have at least one evening of downtime at home per week. Similarily one night off social media per week will seriously help your mental health. Unconnected time that allows you to recharge your mind, body and spirit.
Oh and one last pro tip! Get rid of 50% of those apps you downloaded during lockdown. One they are frying your brain. Two you don’t have time for them. Cut yourself off now. I am not even going to go into why. Trust me you will thank me.
One of the gifts of lockdown is that we have become more mindfull of what affects us positively and negatively in life. So make sure you don’t loose focus on that as the shiney flashy lights of the merrygo round start to spin again
I know that if you make sure your prepare yourself for the reopening your mind, body and spirit are not only going to be more resilliant, they will also be flourishing years from now.
Preperation is going to make that transition smoother.
And it will be something your future self thanks you for again and again.