I thought it might be helpful if I shared some of my key strategies that I’ve used to cope with the lockdown and restrictions. Maybe they will help you.
Take Time to Relax
I’ve found this quiet time a great opportunity to watch movies, read books and study subjects I may not have had time to do before. So every night after dinner, I decide if it’s a night for Netflix or Something Else. If it’s “Something Else” I don’t turn on the TV. I leave my phone where I can’t hear or see it, and I turn off my computer. Then I put on some relaxing music and sit and meditate. Or I take a bath. Sometimes I read a different book. Often I go for a walk. Since the new year I’ve been writing in a new journal. Occasionally I will go to bed early. I’ve decided that this time I am being given is a gift. Figure out what this “quiet time” will be for you, and revel in it. Who knows how long it will last.
Keep in Touch With Family & Friends
The need to stay at home has forced me to make contact with people in new ways. So I schedule regular phone calls with girlfriends, and my family. I put the times in my calendar so I don’t forget and I bring my tea with me to each call. It’s not the same as a coffee at Starbucks or breakfast at Coras, but for now, it’s a good second best.
I love to eat, and this lockdown has encouraged me to experiment with cooking, especially with my daughter who enjoys the same food as me. So we shop, cook and eat together. Every once in a while we invite my older daughter to join us (she does her own cooking). Even if we’re not eating the same things, we try to have lunch and dinner at the same times together during the week as we go about our day.
I’ve never had so many video calls with people as I have since last March. I love to use Zoom, WhatsApp, and now Telegram to connect with people. And it’s a bonus that wearing a mask isn’t necessary for this.
Whatever way you keep in touch is great, just keep at it. We are all feeling the lack of socialization and your family and friends will appreciate your efforts to stay connected.
Getting Stuff in Order
My house is going through a spring clean even though it’s January and there’s snow on the ground. I’ve sorted photographs, clothes, files and dishes. I’ve given boxes away to Value Village (when it was open), and sold bigger items on Facebook Marketplace really easily. I’m finding the time to clean out cupboards and sort through my belongings very therapeutic. This is a great opportunity to really minimize your “stuff”. Take it from me you’ll feel a whole lot lighter. It’s a known fact that clutter brings you down.
Manage Food and Alcohol
Talking about feeling lighter, as I said above I love to eat but I knew early on that if I didn’t keep track, I’d be gaining the quarantine 15, so I have made it a point to limit my consumption of sugar, alcohol and rich food. I make sure I don’t feel deprived (by only eating healthy, delicious and filling food) and I have been following a 16/8 Intermittent Fasting regime since last April. It has worked a charm. I don’t eat before 12 noon, and I only eat 2 main meals each day, with one snack. This has kept me focused on my goal of maintaining a great weight. In fact, I even lost weight … what a bonus! Make sure you know what result you want, and tailor your intake accordingly, or your shorts won’t fit you when we get to Spring!
I have been able to find some great online teachers to help me stay fit. I like goals that have a finite timeline so many times I have signed up for 30 day challenges. These keep me motivated as I like to see if I can keep the schedule. I’m pretty competitive with myself so I generally do all 30 days and then find something different. I’ve tried two different kinds of yoga, Instagram workouts, breathing lessons, dance classes and regular walking. Find whatever works for you, and just keep your body moving.
I really like to keep a routine. It helps me know what’s going on, and what to expect. So I generally journal morning and night, eat at the same times each day, and exercise in the morning. I also use Google Calendar faithfully and put almost everything in there whether it’s a client meeting, medical appointment or workout. I also use a lot of reminders on my phone, as well as pieces of paper beside my computer to keep me on track. If you are constantly forgetting things or need some structure, try these ideas to bring order every day. It works for me.
I hope this has been useful in part to give you an idea of ways to “enjoy” this time we are having right now.
Next time, I will write about some of the spiritual practices I use to keep me connected and grounded when stress comes my way.
I wish I could tell you it’s going to be over soon.
But I can’t. Not yet. No one can.
But what I can tell you is, it IS going to be different.
Because it already is.
Before the ‘Rona, all I heard from new clients was …
I’m not having any fun.
I have too much to do.
I can’t relax.
I am super busy.
I can’t meditate.
My body is in overdrive.
I need a nap FOR A WEEK.
I’m in debt.
I feel drained.
I want a vacation.
Can I run away?
We recognize that we are all still in a situation that’s unclear, uncertain and unpredictable BUT our collective energy is changing.
There’s now …
Time to think.
Time to spring clean.
Time to read.
Time to watch movies.
Time to chat with friends and family online.
Time to garden.
Time to relax.
Time to cook something new.
Time to go for a walk.
Time to focus.
Time to breathe.
Time to be with the kids.
Time to talk on the phone.
Time to sleep.
Time to work.
Time to be together (with those we live with).
Time to feel rested.
Time to take care of paperwork.
Time to be present.
I believe we were all due for a “reset”.
Our world needed to stop.
And this is what is happening.
Whether we like it or not.
Maybe for some of you …
Life still sucks.
And it’s getting worse.
And you’re scared.
And if you’re in that place I have news.
It’s going to get even worse.
Because here’s what’s going on.
Our planet is up-leveling.
And things are going to be a whole lot different.
So let’s figure out why your life sucks. TODAY. Let’s get you help.
There is HOPE.
Complete my short intake form, and let’s talk.
Let’s talk about what you really want with your life.
Let’s start to plan so that your future is brighter.
Let’s make your today and tomorrow even better.
There’s no time to waste.
This ‘Rona time space reality’ won’t be here forever (thank God), and for you, when it’s all done with, it could just be same shit, different world.
Is that what you want?
No, I didn’t think so.
Here’s that form.
Once I get your form, we’ll have a real conversation about your world … and see if we can help you create something better.
It was a blast from the past. It had been 9 years since I’d seen him, so his voicemail took me completely by surprise.
“I’m not sure if you’ll remember me but I was just wondering how you’re doing?”
We first met in the middle of an ice storm in March 2011. It was a night when only crazy people would leave their house to go on a first date. We connected right away and after talking in a quiet coffee shop for almost 2 hours we found ourselves in a nearby empty movie theatre, making out in the back row like teenagers. We quickly discovered how to play, laugh and enjoy each other, as lovers do.
He was the first man to tell me I was beautiful and he loved my passion for life. He cooked me dinner and enjoyed listening to my stories. A musician, he had a guitar in every room of his house and after making love he would serenade me. I would lie back and enjoy the simplicity of our time together.
A whirlwind romance it lasted only a few months before he was just a beautiful memory of a time long ago.
What memories do you hold dear? What memories are you making now?
We are living in some difficult times.
And if you listen to the mainstream news it is very frightening.
In a recent conversation with a new connection over zoom, this person said to me “it’s scary”.
“What makes it so scary?” I asked.
She said “going for groceries and maybe dying”.
Dying is only scary if you haven’t lived your life fully.
What if every day, you could live, just a little more?
You don’t have to go anywhere to do this. You just need to be present, where you are.
Present to the simplicity of living fully. NOW.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It’s our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. ~ Marianne Williamson
I called him back. My lover from my past. And we met and had dinner. We laughed, played and enjoyed each other a decade later and leaving the restaurant we agreed to stay friends.
And we have spoken several times since. Making new memories.
What kind of memories are you making right now, and what will you remember in a decade? Will there be laughter, play and simplicity? Or fear, anxiety and doubt?
If you are looking for simplicity, sometimes stillness is needed. I’ve written a short poem to bring you more connection to yourself. I call it the STILLNESS PRAYER.
If you want better COUPLE INTIMACY this will help you understand yourself and your partner more.
And if you are SCARED, let’s have a conversation. Complete this simple form and let’s talk about how we can get you in a new frame of mind.
Trying out one of these tools won’t change everything. But it will change one thing. You. And changing you will definitely give you a new memory to look forward to.
Dying is only scary if you haven’t lived your life fully. ~ Gail Scott