2020 has been *slightly* stressful to say the least – here are five ways to take care of yourself during uncertain times.
If you’re anything at all like me, you might enjoy having control over the things in your life.
How much sleep you get, what you eat for breakfast, the schedule of your day, your successes, your journey … and just about everything in between.
But here’s the thing: that’s not how life works.
We’ve seen it time and time again. Just when you think you’ve mastered the careful art of preparing, life throws you yet another curveball.
Uncertainty is always present in our lives to some extent, but let’s face it: 2020 has set an entirely new precedent. So for this week’s post, I hope the following five tips for dealing with uncertainty will move your internal needle a little closer towards the “peace of mind” side.
1) Remember your past victories.
When we’re going through a particularly stressful time, it can help to recall a time from life when we were incredibly stressed about something and it ended up working out just fine (by the way, have you noticed that it almost always works out just fine?). This here is your “hard evidence” of why things will probably be ok in the end. Remember that your emotions, as concrete as they may seem, on the contrary are not hard evidence 🙂
2) Double down on self-care.
Isn’t it funny how the times when we need self-care the most also tend to be the times when we forget about it completely? Whatever your self-care favorite is … an unplugged outdoor walk, yoga, a good book and a glass of wine, or anything else … it’s important to make time for it now. Try to create a habit of, as soon as you feel stress coming on, pulling out your calendar and scheduling an hour for something that takes care of you.
3) Decide to STOP tormenting yourself.
With the Internet everywhere we look, it’s particularly easy these days to torment our already stressed selves and pile stressors on top of stressors. For example, if you’re worried about finding a new apartment, you might find yourself on the Zillow app late into the night. Decide to stop. Set clear boundaries for yourself around when you will “consume” so that you don’t end up suffering needlessly.
4) Get clear on what you can control.
What do you have the ability to control right now without a doubt? Get out a pencil and paper, and make a list, keeping in mind that not all these actions will have a physical outcome. Some of them might be more internal, such as coming up with a comforting mantra to say to yourself when you feel your worry creeping in.
5) Surrender to what you can’t.
One of my favorite books as a child was about a goblin who got his hand terribly stuck in a pickle jar. After hours and hours of agony, he finally learned that if he just let go of the pickles he was grabbing onto so tightly, his hand would slide out of the jar easily. Surrendering can certainly be scary, but the reward is oh so sweet. When we focus on releasing ourselves from an outcome that we ultimately have no power over, it is one of the most freeing feelings in the world. Give yourself this gift. Focus on what you can control and let go of the rest.