Refresh your routine with these five strategies
The pandemic has forced us all into new routines that may not be ideal for our overall wellness. With warmer weather and longer days here, it’s the perfect time to do some spring cleaning on your wellness routine!
Remember: there can be pressure and expectations around the idea of finding the “perfect” wellness routine. Wellness will look different for everyone depending on their specific circumstances. Be kind to yourself, and find what works for you.
Keep a sleep diary
Using a sleep diary can help identify any patterns that may be helping, or hindering, your nightly sleep. Before you go to bed, write down the number of caffeinated drinks you had, which medicines you took, if you felt tired during the day, if you took a nap during the day, your mood during the day and what you did in the hour before you went to bed.
In the morning you can write things like the time you woke up, what time you went to bed the night before, how easily you fell asleep, how many times you woke up during the night and how long it took to fall back asleep, and your general sleep quality.
When you can, eat local
On average food travels 2,500 km before reaching our home/plate. When you buy local, your food doesn’t have to travel as far, which means local farmers can let the produce ripen properly before harvesting – optimizing nutrients and resulting in fresher tasting food. You’re also supporting local farmers – a win-win!
Find your work-life balance
Even though many of us have had more than a year to adapt to our work-from-home routine, the line between where work life ends, and personal time begins, can still be blurry. To work from home instead of “living at work,” establish routines like dressing for work, maintaining business hours and a dedicated work space, taking fresh air breaks and asking for help from colleagues when you need it. See where you are at with this work-life balance quiz from CMHA, and this stress index test from CMHA.
Social connection is known to lower anxiety and depression, and can help us regulate our emotions. From your basic phone call catch-up to having a weekly dinner date with a friend over video, there are plenty of ways to stay connected now. Create a list of a few people that you can check on daily or weekly and write to people you haven’t seen in a while. We’re all isolated right now and it’s normal to try new ways of communication. Consider joining a support group if you feel particularly isolated.
Practise a skill
There’s a reason that everyone started making bread in the early days of the pandemic. Practising a skill or doing an activity helps you feel more accomplished and boost your confidence. Choosing one hobby that you can practise daily or weekly is a great way to provide a sense of purpose during a confusing time while easing stress. You can add a social aspect by practising your new skill with a friend over video call.
Check out more wellness tips from UHN to start your spring off right.
Did you try out any of these tips? Have any that we should add? Share on social media and tag us @uhn.foundation!