Dr. Hilary and Pandemic Self-Care
To say life is a little bit strange right now would be the understatement of the century! After over a month of social lockdown, you may notice people coping differently. It is inevitable that you will have good days and bad days. Productivity, creativity, and positivity will ebb and flow as we navigate this global pandemic.
Self-care is defined as any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. The CDC recommends taking breaks from news and media intakes, taking care of your body by eating well, avoiding drugs and alcohol, exercising, making time to unwind with enjoyable hobbies and activities, and connect with others and talk about how you are feeling.
Personally, a month of self-isolation and not working has been tough to say the least! I want to share a bit of my own experience and how I’ve been filling all of my free time. I’ve never had this much down time in my life, some days I relish in it, to try new hobbies, cook up a storm, dive back into my yoga practice, and other days… well, not so much. One thing I am grateful for every day is my support system; my friends and family may not be together but we stay connected with endless texts, FaceTime calls, and even the occasional 16-person Zoom chat! It’s a difficult time, and I’m sure I’m not the only one finding it challenging to be home day in and day out, without routine or accountability. To keep some semblance of “real life” I try to keep up with my normal habits of making the bed, getting dressed every day, reading before bed, among others. The most important daily habit I try to do is to go outside for even a short walk.
Multiple studies reference the benefit of being outside, and with the warmer weather sneaking up on us (slowly) it’s the perfect time to go for a walk, a ride, a run, etc. So to capitalize on these sunny days and all of this free time, my partner and I have decided to check off something on our bucket list: fly fishing! We start the day with – you guessed it – coffee! My partner watches YouTube videos about everything from knot tying to fly-casting to how to find good spots to fish! I usually spend the time prepping snacks for us. Choosing where to fish, or get tangles out of my line in my case, comes next. Once we load up the car, we kiss the dog goodbye and get on with our day of outdoor isolation! Fly fishing along the Bow is world renowned so we’ve been spending our days hiking and exploring and taking in the fresh air. No matter how bad a day I’m having, these excursions help make it much better.
Once we load up the car, we kiss the dog goodbye and get on with our day of outdoor isolation!
A new hobby has been a great way to re-introduce some stimulus into life. It offers an opportunity to learn, to get outside, and to discover some beautiful parts of our city. I’m a sucker for education, and am an aspiring outdoors-woman, so this checks off all of the boxes! It also offers my partner and I a chance to bond and learn something together. He and I didn’t expect to move to Calgary and jump into a global pandemic, but he makes my days more fun and it’s great to do something new together. Many of the local fishing shops have a lot of information online, and will once again begin offering their courses and workshops once Calgary re-opens, I for one can’t wait to dive head first into this great new hobby!
What have you been doing to stay happy, active, healthy, or even just a little bit sane during this time? If you’re struggling with pain that prevents you from these activities please reach out; we are offering tele-health appointments to help you with any issues!
Dr. Hilary, DC