In today’s post we are getting back to some basics – doing ground-level self care.
As is my new tradition, the chatty part is below the videos.
I chose both of these videos because they are direct, quick, and helpful. The first one is about functional fitness – just getting your body moving in a way that both feels good and will help you loosen up your muscles a little. The second is a breathing exercise – box breathing – that can be useful in all kinds of situations – including developing mindfulness.
The goal here was to think about the low-key things we can do to make our lives a bit easier – some movement now will help us feel a little better overall, a breathing exercise will help us feel calmer as we move through the day.
These are basic and incremental things that we can sometimes overlook as we think about big things we would like to change.
However, small things like this not only help us right now – which is inherently valuable – but, as a bonus, they can help us slowly create space for bigger things we want to do later.
And, if things get overwhelming, we can always return to basics like these.
The Chatty Part
Martha’s advice for this day in 2020 was Take Your Meds , a reminder to ensure your own wellbeing throughout this busy time by taking any medication you require.
That advice is great at any time of the year but it is especially helpful during this busy time when routines are disrupted and things can get overlooked.
A reminder to take your meds is a foundational thing that can make a huge difference in your day and it is worth reminding yourself about.
In an interesting coincidence, my Facebook memories from yesterday included a related reminder. (The relationship may only exist in my mind but let’s roll with it.)
From time to time, I write ‘Go Team’ style posts on my own Facebook profile so I can provide a little support to any friends who might need it at the moment.
In 2018, I was reminding us all that it is ok to make our lives easier by using reminders and support (say, like medications, for example.)
Here’s the text from that post:
These are my favourite mitts.
Description of image below: my right hand dangling a green mitten on a string over a pile of snow on the road.
I don’t wear them every day but they are superwarm and, you will notice, they are on a string.
So, when I do wear them, that string means that I can grab my winter coat to go out and I don’t have to look for my mitts. It means I can take off my mitt to unlock my door and I don’t have to tuck it under my arm and risk losing it.
That string on these mitts was amazingly useful when my kids were small and I always had a lot of things to keep track of.
I know that mittens on a string are kind of a little kid thing and as an adult, perhaps I “shouldn’t” need them but they are useful and they serve my purposes quite well.
We often get caught up in whether we ‘should’ need certain things – reminders, schedules, delivery services, help with everyday tasks – and because we feel we ‘shouldn’t’ need to use them, we don’t. Then we get frustrated because we can’t ‘get a grip’ on the tasks in question.
Today, I’m challenging you to accept the idea of mittens on a string – or at least the equivalent.
What’s something you can do to take one small hassle out of your life?
What can you do to make one routine task a little easier?
Even if you feel that you ‘shouldn’t’ need the help or the reminder, I dare you to use it anyway.
Go ahead and set a weekly reminder to call your mother.
Go on and establish a daily reminder to take your pills or to drink water.
Put a basket by the door for your purse or your keys.
Do the thing you need to do to make your life a little easier.
I dare you!
There, see what I mean?
Things like taking your meds definitely fall into the sort of self-care that we might experience a little push-back (internal or external) about needing.
I’d like it if we could all find our way past that pushback and be able to: take our meds, set a reminder to take our meds, use a shoehorn, keep a set of reading glasses in multiple places, get the large print book, create a cleaning schedule, get a friend to sit with us when we work…or whatever we need in order to do the thing. I want us to be free to find/give ourselves the accommodations and support that make sense without having to second-guess ourselves.
And this seems like a great season to give ourselves that gift.
Whether you are doing foundational fitness, breathing exercises, or enlisting help to clean your house/ wrap your presents/ finish that year-end report/get to that meeting, I wish you ease.
And I wish you peace of mind around giving yourself permission to get that support.
About Making Space
About Making Space 2022
In December 2020, Fit is a Feminist Issue blogger Martha created a tradition – a series of reminder posts to take good care of ourselves during this last month of the year when it is far too easy to get swept up in your to do list, no matter what you are celebrating or not celebrating. Last year, it was my turn and after an introductory Go Team post called Give Yourself Some Space, I created a series of reminders called ‘Making Space‘ that offered a suggested short exercise video and a suggested meditation in case you needed an easy way to find space for yourself in your schedule.
For 2022, I’ll be doing the same thing but I’ll also be including a link to Martha’s post from the same date in 2020 and I’ll offer a few extra ideas for relaxation, creativity, and self-kindness here and there.
These posts are not about insisting that you do more, more, more during this busy season. Instead, I want to encourage you to remember that there IS a *YOU* who is doing all of the things and you are worth taking good care of.
Perhaps the things I suggest aren’t what you need in the moment. That’s totally ok. Perhaps you can use something else to create some space, something that will help you feel more relaxed or more in charge of your day.