The wonderful world of wellness has become about a 4 trillion dollar industry globally and experienced significant increase between the years 2015-2017. What exactly defines wellness? Well in terms of what is included in the wellness industry, you can find healthy eating, nutrition, weight loss, mind body, fitness tourism (retreats), preventative and personalized medicine, traditional and complimentary medicine, spa economy, and thermal/mineral springs.
So here we are in the midst of the corona virus and how can we redefine living WELL through this, rather than waiting for it to pass and maybe giving up and turning to not so healthy food, alcohol, and binge watching netflix? (Even though we were asked to rather than go out?) This is not to say I do not love me a reese’s cup, a stiff drink, or Love is Blind from time to time. I think one can live well and enjoy celebrations and indulgences. Again, only each peep on an individual level knows when they are in the green. And often times, if one doesn’t and one keeps trucking along full speed ahead – they will live life in a very empty way.
To me, living well means feeling overall in alignment and at peace with myself, my faith, my home, my planet, my closest relationships, my job or purpose, and my finances. When I feel like these elements are in the green – then I feel pretty good. But when something gets rocked – I don’t feel so well. After many years of practicing yoga and breath work, I have become very in tune with when my body/mind/soul are in the green and when I have off days and if the off days become too OFF-ten (haha get it?) – then I know it is time to explore what area is being depleted and how to get some support. However, I am not always so good at asking for support so to me it becomes easier to spend money outside to “fix” something and now most of those services are not available so we are left to again redefine and maybe simplify “wellness” and I think that is a fabulous thing to do during this time.
So – here are some tips to living WELL during a crisis such as this:
- Let your body sleep until it is ready to awake. Yes, Yes, I know we have jobs. I get it. But if you are not working a late shift right now and you have the extra time minus a commute – let your body wake you up. We are human beings that at one point in time were very connected to nature/insert higher power if your beliefs warrant). Collectively we have gotten a little away from this way of living (Enter book Mark Manson the world is f*ed). Great read. Highly recommend. When you let your body sleep until it is ready to arise you allow your body the time it needs to rid itself and heal itself and fully repair. Your parasympathetic nervous system will thank you greatly. And for those of you that are financially motivated – this costs you nothing. Expenses reduced.
- Have some sort of morning ritual to start your day. I love a little bit of reading and a bit of yoga or pilates or movement of some sort to fully feel my body and begin each day appreciating it’s ability to help me move through my day with both strength and ease. If you have physical limitations, you still have your breath and that is uber powerful. There are so many online yoga classes and fitness classes available – this is an amazing time to get to try new things and new teachers while taking care of yourself. If you can’t afford it – there are plenty of FREE classes available on youtube and other places.
- Create some sort of routine for the weekdays and weekend. During this time I have heard many say the days are blurring together. If you know that eventually you are going to re enter a workforce, you do not want to lose that sense of having a routine. Now if you have children – they help keep you on a schedule. If you don’t, create one with some consistency for M-F and then on the weekend – it’s the weekend. We personally have created that Friday is take out night and we support a local restaurant picking a different one each week and it is something we all look forward to after a week of routine. We also keep regular bedtimes for the week days and maybe stay up a wee bit longer on the weekend.
- Spend time outside. Fresh air does a body good. Most of us know this but can get wrapped up again in a fast paced life forgetting that we haven’t really enjoyed a slow walk or a breath of fresh air in quite some time. Ayurvedically we are coming out of the winter months of hibernation and renewal and heading towards spring – rebirth. Soak up some sun and learn to dance in the rain.
- Put the phones away and connect to the humans in your life. This is a great time for families to really build solid foundations rooted in their traditions, their love, and their light. Have long dinners without the phones or play games or create art or decorate a portion of the house together or have a planned movie night. Get creative with this. These are your people, your ride or dies – do you really know them or have you been on a non stop wheel for the past few years?
- NOURISH yourself well. There are now no distractions from the outside. Get curious with your habits. Were you one of those people that hoarded food and if so, what kind? Take a look at your cupboards. Look in the mirror and ask yourself honestly, have I been feeding myself well and can I use this time to get back to eating more naturally if I steered a little bit away from? Now, food is a challenging one to cover in one bullet point but I am sure I’ll have some more posts on this for later. Just know that what you put in your body as an impact on your overall wellness as well as the thoughts you have surrounding yourself and your relationship to food. So make this a conscious love affair with nourishing yourself well.
- Be Kind to yourself and others. I look at this time as one that will cause a lot of us to purge emotional baggage at random times and learn a lot about our core selves. Be kind during the process. Part of becoming well, is sitting with your not so well parts and with your past pain that you may have pushed through. Grieve. Cry. Sit with it. It’s time. And when emotions arise – notice how you speak to your inner child and how you maybe do not honor your pain. This could amaze you and change the way you not only talk and treat yourself but how you may treat and talk to and about other humans. We are experiencing this as one. We have an impact on one another. We have the ability to unite in love.