Hey friend. 2020 has been, in no small measure, a challenge, and it's only March. Self-compassion is important now more than ever.
I’ve worked from home for the last few years. In the last few weeks, nothing has been that different in my day-to-day (other than not being able to voluntarily go anywhere), but somehow everything feels different.
I’ve had a lot of people message and email me over the last week about struggling with emotional eating, having a routine, and staying “on track.”
It made me reflect on what I’ve heard over the last few years, even up to last month…
People would say “If only I could just have some extended period of time where I didn’t have to go anywhere, and I could just focus on cooking and focus on myself, then I could be healthy!”
And here we are, most of us at home and able to cook, wanting to eat more Cheetos, take-out, and ice cream than we’ve had in the last decade. (By “we,” I, of course, mean “me”).
Some people might be “taking advantage” of this time, but a lot of us are curling into a ball, trying to escape and waiting for it to be over. This is where self-compassion is crucial.
It’s been a couple of weeks now for many of us in isolation, and it isn’t getting easier.
We're feeling more and more stir-crazy, and not having a timeline for when this is going to end adds to the anxiety (cue a long *sigh* and breathing exercises here).
This has been fairly heavy for a lot of us, and it should be treated as such. People are sick, losing jobs, worried about family, and facing existential questions about humanity.
There’s a lot of pain, and perhaps feelings of loss. It’s almost like we’re going through a breakup, or grieving over the loss of a loved one, waiting for the pain to subside.
Would you tell your best friend who is grieving that they can’t have chocolate and shouldn’t be crying about it?
No! Because you are a kind and understanding person with compassion. And it doesn’t help to tell ourselves that we should be handling this so much differently, either. Why can't we find self-compassion?
When something emotionally affects us, we have to address it and let the emotions come, even if that means Cheetos and ice cream for a period of time… even if they are just a distraction.
But there comes a time when we have to acknowledge that those choices aren’t really serving us, and start taking action in a way that does, with compassion.
The loss doesn’t come back, but we get stronger and decide to stand tall and try again.
Maybe you are ready for that reset now, or maybe not quite yet, but be open to that moment coming around, and when you feel inspired, capitalize on it.
Momentum is essential.
It might feel like everything is slowing down, but keeping our momentum going, regarding our physical health, mental health, jobs, personal work, productivity and overall outlook on life, is even more important during a crisis like this.
The goal is not perfection, but progress. Baby steps!
You know me, I love fresh starts. Today is Monday. This week we’ve got the beginning of a new month. There are so many opportunities to sync up and begin again!
I’ll be using my monthly resolutions calendar to choose just one thing to focus on that will get me up off the couch, my hand out of the Cheetos bag, and my mind reset and present.
My April resolution: 10,000 steps per day.
I can go out and walk (as of now), so why not use it as an opportunity to get in some movement, get fresh air daily, get out of the house, and set an achievable goal that I can feel motivated and inspired by!
It’s important to remember that this may be a frustrating chapter of life, but it IS life.
Our lives have not been put on hold; they are still happening. And we can take advantage of every day we have just the same with self-compassion, even if we are isolated at home.
So be kind to yourself, give yourself a break if you’re struggling, and once you feel inspired to get up and do something, DO IT! You can begin again any day, at any moment.
What’s your April resolution going to be?
Sending light and love to you and your loved ones!
May you be happy and well,