Water Your Emotional GardenAn Invitation to Love Yourself
The world as it stands is struggling and we, right along with it. Nurturing our own emotional selves has to rise in the ranks in terms of priority. Self care used to be some hippy dippy idea for those whose lives were so bogged down by the hustle, they forgot to take care of number one. Now it’s a matter of survival. It’s time to water your emotional garden through intentional activities that lift your spirits, allow you to be present, and to be your best selves for you and those around you.
So what can we do to maintain an optimistic and hopeful disposition throughout this bizarre time in history? Well we reached out to a professional, gathered some statistics to help explain how to find your happy, and compiled a list of affirmations. We also found a bunch of random things that made us smile.
Strength, courage, and wisdom
And it’s been inside of me all along.
— India Arie
Let’s start with the random books we found at Urban Outfitters that gave us a smile:
Words of wisdom and encouragement “to the people” by Susan Winston, M.F.T.
I know many of you thrive in high-stress situations – jobs, family, life but now we are in a pandemic and the energy required to make sense of this is exhausting. We find ourselves crashing. Maybe unable to get up in the morning. For those with children, it is hard to face another day getting them online. Unable to look at the same space, feel lonely, lost. Feel like we got robbed of some great events like marriages or graduations or parties or just hanging out with friends. We have run out of what the researcher refers to as:
Surge Capacity: a collection of adaptive systems—mental and physical—that humans draw on for short-term survival in acutely stressful situations, such as natural disasters.
This is not short term. It seems to just draw out longer and longer.
This is different from depression. It is expecting a lot of us to manage this really well. The “new-normal” is an ever-changing indefinite uncertainty that impacts our daily lives. The destruction is invisible, causing chronic fatigue, and a feeling of burnout.
It is normal to have moments of feeling hopeless or helpless. We all do. We are a solution-oriented society with no solution. We have lost a way of life. We have lost lives. We have lost our freedom to move about. Many may have lost trust in our government. For those on the West Coast, you look at the fires burning in CA and Oregon and go, what’s next?
There is no handbook for this. But how about waking up and accepting that this will be a tough day—and when it is less than tough? Celebrate. Expect less of yourself and then there will be less to replenish.
Give yourself permission to take down-time.
Yes, you get to be angry, feel grief. Sometimes you have to accept a bit of the irrational. You can’t change the situation, only your perception of it. Look for things to focus your energy on like self-care, cooking, buff up the home, set a family or friends zoom chat to look forward to. Maintain and strengthen your relationships. Offer to help others. By doing this you get to refill that “Surge Capacity” every once in a while, and then…do it again.
You are a resilient crew. I gain strength every day in talking with you. We laugh, we cry, we kick our shins and would like to kick others. I care about you and know you care about me. That makes me stronger. I am here for you whether regularly or if you leave and come back. I will always be here. Nice to know there is a constant in this unruly world. We’ve got each other.
Talk to Your Plants | Order Them On Etsy
You know how some people always say flowers make them happy? Or the oddballs that talk to their plants, convinced it helps them grow? Turns out science proves being around indoor plants can and does bring you peace and joy (and talking to your plants does make them happy). In a study performed by the Journal of Physiological Anthropology, their study showed that. “active interaction with indoor plants can reduce physiological and psychological stress compared with mental work. This is accomplished through suppression of sympathetic nervous system activity and diastolic blood pressure and promotion of comfortable, soothed, and natural feelings.”
In fact some doctors have even started prescribing talking to your plants to help with lowering anxiety. In an article published in Metro by Laura Abernathy, she mentions that Cornbrook Medical Practive in Hulme, UK, medical ecretary Augusta Ward said: ‘The plants we will be giving people are mainly herbs – things like lemon balm and catmint, which all have mindful qualities. Having something to care for brings so many benefits to people – especially for those who may not have a garden or be able to have pets.
Dr. Philippa James, one of the surgery’s GPs, said, “I’ve seen how our patients relax in the garden – and how they then get involved in wider events like picking litter, which all adds to pride in our area.” Dr, Ruth Bromley, GP and chair of Manchester Health and Care Commissioning, a partnership between Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group and Manchester City Council, concluded with:
So much of what keeps people happy and well isn’t medical.
That’s why ideas like this one are so wonderfully effective, building on what is best about our communities and supporting patients close to where they live.’
We love Pflugerville Pfarms for purchasing perfectly cared for baby plants and produce. It comes packaged with care.
In an article in ThinkUp.me, they created 25 affirmations to help you in times of stress. When you say them, look in the mirror and smile at yourself, or go for a walk and pop a squat on the sand or on some vacant grass and tap into that silly part of you that will say these words aloud and feel your emotional cup filling back up.
We wanted to share our Top 10 (and you can check out the other 15 here).
25 Stress Relief Affirmations to Help You Get Through a Stressful Day
- I love myself for who I am.
- I am relaxed and calm.
- My tension is melting away.
- I am letting go of all my worries and fears.
- I deserve a peaceful and loving life.
- I am releasing my concerns by breathing slowly and deeply.
- Challenges bring opportunities.
- I give myself a credit every time I do something that makes me happy.
- I let go of defensiveness and choose to fill my world with joy and kindness instead.
- I am thankful and grateful for the good in my life.
Lastly? Grab your kiddo(s), your pets, your partner, your imaginary friend, whomever and whatever brings you joy, throw on a homemade face mask (the beauty kind, not the COVID kind), cut up some cucumber, place it over those stressed eyes, and laugh while you beautify. For home mask recipes, visit Food to Live’s overview of five masks and scrubs you can make with basic ingredients. The avocado and coconut oil mask sounds like a little slice of skincare heaven.
I’d also recommend blasting your favorite song. The one on our playlist these days? F2020. Yup, it’s a song. And its marvelous.