As we roll into another lockdown here in Sydney I feel myself slipping. Mentally, physically, psychologically, I think we can all safely say the last eighteen months has been a rollercoaster and not one of the nice ones that you want to ride again. No, this more the one where you’re holding on for dear life until your knuckles turn white, praying to the vomit gods that you’re not going to throw up, and then throwing up anyway. And so in lockdown number seven hundred and fifty three, this post outlines my 5 reminders I think a few of us might need to hear.
I am questioning everything I do. Everything I say. Every decision I make. Contemplating another week of trying to home-school while managing a huge work-load has got me second-guessing my words, my mood and my behaviour. My head is spinning.
Throughout these tumultuous times I have held on to one notion tightly with both hands: my son will not feel this. He’s 6 and I am dedicated, as I am sure all of you reading this are, to protecting him from the chaos and ensuring he experiences the happy, fun-filled, childhood adventure he deserves. But this is a huge pressure, right? When we are feeling down, stressed, anxious or scared, it’s an added weight to try to ensure that doesn’t rub off on our little ones. This is normal to an extent, but right now the balance is probably way (waaaay) off.
So what do we do, when we can’t control external factors? We look within to control our reactions.
Here are my 5 reminders to parents during lockdown. 5 things to focus on that I hope will help you find some respite and hone your inner glow.
- Be kind to yourself. Now more than ever, we need to practice self care. I say this a lot, but the best way to take care of the ones you love, is to take care of yourself. Carve out time for you each day if you can. What helps you relax? Is it reading a book, a warm bubble bath or a yoga session? Do not skip these things.
- Be mindful of your thoughts. Recognising when you’re festering on the negative and consciously changing the narrative will do wonders for your hormone balance. Leaning into the negative releases cortisol in our body, and an imbalance of this can lead to all kinds of health problems.
- Connect with your friends and family. It’s important to remind yourself in these times of isolation that you aren’t alone. We are social creatures and we need connection. The Zoom fatigue is real, but get your girls (& boys!) together for virtual wines or a cup of herbal tea and shoot the shit.
- Practice gratitude. I know we are all grateful in times like this for our health, but this can get lost amongst the stresses of every day life when under such unique circumstances. If you don’t do it already, start counting your blessings of a morning and night. What are you grateful for when you wake up? A hot shower, a hug from your kids, a warm house on these cold winter days. Say the things out loud to yourself or better yet, write them down. End your day in the same way, but more specifically, what were you grateful for today?
- Give yourself a break. Lastly, you’re not always going to be able to keep it together. You are going to snap, yell or perhaps just have a moody day. That’s okay. Get comfortable with saying sorry when you need to and move on. Give yourself and your loved ones a break.
We are all hyper-sensitive right now. If you’re not, you are one zen mamma! Go you. Fact is, our kids will feel what we feel, no matter how hard we try to smile over the “ffs”. So that’s why it’s so, so important to take care of you and your mental health. Because if you find your glow inside it will radiate out. Your glow is in there, it might be just a little burnt out right now.
You’ve got this x