Taking Care of Yourself During Stressful Times

It’s always important to take care of yourself, but now more than ever it should be a priority.  These are stressful times for most of us but we are experiencing it in different ways.   Managing your stress is important for mental health but also for your immune system, extra stress inhibits the immune response. Be kind to yourself and recognize that we are in uncharted territory, there is collective trauma, and also our individual challenges.  We've put together a list of our best practices for self-care for managing stress, but are also essential for everyday health.

1) Moderate news and information input(social media detox).

There is so much information out there and so many opinions it makes me feel like I’m short circuiting sometimes.   It’s good to be informed on factual information but make sure you create boundaries on the amount of TIME you spend soaking up the information.  I like to check things in the morning for a few minutes and then leave it alone the rest of the day. This includes social media. Don’t use the precious time you have mindlessly scrolling the internet.

2) Eat healthy whole foods
That famous saying…”you are what you eat” is good advice.   Eat lots of fresh vegetables and fruits, more greens, and healthy comfort foods like root vegetables.  Try to avoid overly processed and junk foods but remember balance is the key.

3) Drink a lot of water
Water is an essential part of life. It aids in digestion, cell growth, lubrication of the joints and flushes waste.  . Up to 60% of our bodies are water! We recommend ½ your body weight in ounces for optimal function. Keep a large cup or container to make it easier to get in those ounces.   If you find that you have a hard time drinking enough try drinking through a straw (which helps some people drink more quickly, or adding fruit such as strawberries, berries, lemon or lime.

4) Daily movement
Get your body moving!   We all know that movement and exercise are good for you more specifically at least 30-hour everyday.   It’s a good way to reduce stress, increase endorphins(your happy hormones), and feel good. This could be not only exercise but dancing, yoga, biking, or go for a neighborhood walk.

5) Integrate play and fun
Let loose and allow yourself to let go of the seriousness of the situation through  activities that brings you joy and integrates your inner child. This can include coloring, painting, blowing bubbles, Puzzles, or  playing a board game.

6) Read A Book
Nourish your mind.   Read novel, cookbook, short story, listen to a book, or read an excerpt from an inspirational short read.    I love to keep a few short books to glance through when i need it, such as How to See, Brave Enough, Light in the AtticJourney to the Heart

7) Practice Deep Breathing/Meditation
Mindful breathing and/or meditation can help curb anxiety, reduce stress, and turns our attention inward. Just a reminder it’s called Practice for a reason, be consistent and keep trying to find a method that works for you.

Dr Weil breathing techniques.

The Wim Hoff Method

Meditation can come in many forms not limited to stillness.   Types of meditation can include drumming, singing, walking meditations, dancing and movement.

8) Reorganize/rearrange your space
Studies actually show that cleaning or reorganizing your space can aid in stress reduction.   When we have a tidy space it also allows for us to make more mental space but also just cleaning helps us focus on what we can control….our environment.

9) Write down a gratitude list
Gratitude is the act of being thankful and showing appreciation for what we do have.   I write something I’m grateful for everyday. It helps to boost positivity even when things are heavy and not quite like we want them.

We are all so grateful for each one of you and can't wait to see you all soon.

With Love and Support,

Team Touch of Health

(Dr. Katrina, Melissa, Dr.Nick, Jenny, Jodi)