Self-care during COVID-19

To date, I've not discussed this current, and unprecedented situation that we're in. And for good reason. I'm not interested in adding to the hysteria, panic, misinformation and BS regarding COVID-19, the Coronavirus.

It's possible that dependant on your individual circumstances, this may be a time that feels very unsafe and worrying for you. That's understandable and totally OK. I am not here to talk about the virus, how it spreads and what you can do about that. That should be reserved for the qualified sources of public health that we look to.

I am here to provide ways, links, resources and ideas for you to take care during this time.

If you've found yourself wondering why; even if you're healthy; this time feels so eerie, then you need to talk about Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs.

Whilst it's been updated over the years, it essentially lays out our needs as humans in a hierarchical pyramid.
At the base of this pyramid are food and shelter.
One layer up and you'll find security and safety.
Next layer includes connection and belonging.

These represent our basic needs as humans and right now, they're not assured.
That's why life feels weird and uncertain.

EAT FOODS THAT YOU ENJOY

The topic of food may be particularly worrying if you feel there is a food scarcity and/or you've been a dieter. This can trigger feelings of restriction/binge and guilt. Please ensure you have the foods you enjoy around you, though hoarding is not necessary. It may feel that you are using food to cope with uncomfortable feelings more than usual. This is OK. Give yourself some compassion. If you're newer to working on your relationship to food, it may feel that you are out of control and won't be "healthy." Right now, whether you are self-isolating, social distancing or none of the above - remind yourself that food is food. It call counts. It's all energy. Energy that your body needs. That's healthy. And if it doesn't feel that way, this may be a wonderful opportunity to expand your definition of health.

Eating is a valid form of self-care. You may be experiencing an increase/decrease in appetite. Your eating habits may feel chaotic. Acknowledge however you feel. You’re doing the best you can. A little secret – no one has any damn idea what they’re doing in this challenging time.

A special note - there are no food shortages here in Australia and at the very most, you are only needing to purchase adequate food for a 2-week period. There's no need to get swept up in the panic-buying, that is both unhelpful and takes away from those most vulnerable. Buy what you need and enjoy eating. You're not "ruining" your health. And please ignore all BS promoting any cure or "boost" from food or products. Absolutely zero of this is true. We also don't need to judge ours or other's food choices - especially at the moment.

Non-Diet Shopping and Cooking Guide from London Centre for Intuitive Eating

STAY CALM

Whilst the situation globally is indeed serious, panic helps no-one. And stress itself is infectious. Do your utmost to remain calm. Take care of yourself, ask for the support that you need from those around you. Please take time away from the media if you're feeling overwhelmed. Consider how the 24-7 news cycle is helping? Ask yourself how you can bring about calm in your life? Please only turn to qualified sources of information regarding the changing situation and health recommendations.

Australian Department of Health 
World Health Organisation 

DO THINGS YOU ENJOY

Include activities that you enjoy. Anything that distracts and supports you. Perhaps things you've been putting off? This can feel good and give you a sense of control and purpose.

Listen to or play music. Have a Netflix marathon. Do face masks. Call a friend or loved one and get to know them better. Deep-clean your house. Clear out your wardrobe. Start a new project. Have a podcast binge. Research something you've been putting off. Watch comedy shows. Try to learn a new skill or language. Cuddle your pet. Dance around your house. Move. Journal. Meditate. Redecorate. Try new recipes. Do nothing. All are equally OK.

A special note - YouTube, Insta and various apps provide us the opportunity to connect virtually, even when it comes to movement. Working out at home has never been so fab.

@vinny.yoga is sharing Aussie yoga and meditation teachers who are offering free online classes
@antoni is sharing "quarantine" cooking classes on his IGTV
@hgoodrich is offering ongoing weekly support with a bunch of other US-based non-diet professionals

STAY CONNECTED

No matter your circumstance, reach out. Stay in touch via text, email and FaceTime if need be. Consider others and their needs too. Ask how you can help. We're in this together. Kindness is always the best path to take.

For healthcare services, consider virtual appointments wherever possible. This is exactly what I offer with all 1:1 consultations.
Telehealth services have also been temporarily increased in Australia - learn more here.
For connection, support, humour and a no-diet BS safe space, join our free Facebook community.
If you're working from home and feeling isolated, check out this incredible virtual co-working space.

 

EXTRA SUPPORT

I recorded a podcast episode to help support you during this time.

We chat about:

  • How you always need to eat (+ how that may be stressing you out)
  • How what you’re seeing on social media right now from unqualified sources might not be that helpful
  • Why turning down the noise to protect yourself is important

 

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