Updated: Apr 10, 2020
With all that is going on, we need a moment to stop, breathe, and reset. I am such a Words of Affirmation person, so I want to begin with a few affirmations from one of my favorite Black Girl Bloggers, @TheCoffeyBreak and her book that I share with everyone, Speak Those Things!
Here we go...
Anxiety has no control over me.
Anxiety will not manifest physically. It does not affect my health. It does not affect my sleep.
I am filled with peace and calm.
The people of this country are committed to taking ownership of caring for our neighborhoods and communities.
We as a people are proactive about doing our part to love the environment in a sustainable way.
I am committed. to make a difference in my community.
I am full of hope and I will not lose faith.
We're kicking off a new series here on our blog, Radical Reflections. Radical Reflections is a space that will be used to reflect...radically. Radical is defined as thorough, complete, or relating to the fundamental nature of something. Reflections, as a means of storytelling and truth sharing.
We finally made it to April after what seemed like one of the longest months ever. I'm excited to use this month and the weeks to come to get regrounded and establish new normals, not just for myself but also for my community. COVID-19 has come through and rocked our worlds in ways that we didn't imagine, not even a few weeks ago. With each day, there are new updates, new precautions to take, and a whole lot of adjusting to life at home and practicing social distancing. It's a lot and easy to get overwhelmed. Over 6 million people have filed for unemployment in two weeks (myself included.) While many have shifted to the WFH (Work From Home) life, they have been faced with their own set of new challenges, whether that is living alone during a pandemic, learning how to work through it not being able to take off, being away from family and loved ones, working more from home and for some, simply boredom.
More than anything, I realize that this has and will continue to shape life as we know it, right? While we are met with lots of new-laid out time and maybe extremely difficult and new circumstances, I believe that we will make it through this.
Of course, I was a social distancer before, but there is definitely something new about uninterrupted at home time and at home cooking, and just being in your own bubble without much interaction with "the outside world" besides going out for essentials. The going out process has become so much that I often feel super anxious throughout and after the experience. Can you relate?
Once I push past the initial panic and strangeness of it all, I am able to quiet some of that noise. The noise of the nonstop media reporting, the sad and downright tragic stories of people all over the world, and my own feelings of grief, of fear of the unknown, and filling my time. There has been a huge debate on how we should be using our time. I don't think that there is some magical formula on how to live through a pandemic. I don't think that we should dictate whether one uses the time to sleep and watch everything on Netflix, nor do I think it's fair to tell people to use this time to start the businesses they've always dreamed of. I think a combination of all of those things is a reasonable thing to do at this time.
Prior to the beginning of the social distancing, my job had just ended. I was applying for jobs and even interviewing and offered a job, but things quickly took a turn as a result of COVID-19. While applications are open, many including myself can't risk exposing the people I live with to the virus and the truth is many businesses aren't really hiring anyone. So for now, I wait and I do things that make me feel good, which honestly has been a great normal to live. I have allowed myself time to rest and create new schedules and routines for me.
Here is an example of what my days look like:
*note: I'm not a super morning person
9:30: morning alarm
9:45-10: actually gets up and starts my day, start water intake for the day (doing a gallon a day)
10: wash face, brush teeth, shower/maybe switch into a day outfit (if I feel like it)
11: prepare morning shake and tea/coffee
12: activity (physical, reading, making photo collages, watching a show, anything)
2: prepare lunch shake
2:30/3: activity outside
4: prepare dinner (sometimes meatless)
7-9 pm: connect with friends, some screen time, start winding down
10:30/11 pm: tbh I have been in bed and sleep by this time, but could vary lol obviously
Of course, design an at-home life that speaks to you and allows you space to be free at home. If you follow my Pinterest, you'll see lots of "boards" of all types of activities, and other hobbies I like to do to explore new ways of living through a pandemic.
Lastly, Radical reflections come with a bit of "homework" or prompts and we want to see your work!
Radical Reflections (Action needed):
Create a new routine and try it for 7 days.
Increase your water intake.
Go meatless for at least one meal.
Reach out to 1-3 friends/family members weekly
Set weekly rewards (dessert, trash TV, more sleep,etc.).
Get physical (as you're able to).
What are some of the feelings you've felt in the past 2-4 weeks?
What self-care practices will you be intentional about in the next week? (check out Girl Trek' s list linked).
One word to describe this week.
Stay well, practice social distancing, and don't forget to breathe,