Three Things to Keep Your Sanity During COVID
COVID has impacted this country beyond words and shaken our infrastructure to its core. It’s made us question many things, asked us to reprioritize, and placed heavier demands on everyone. It’s easy to see how a substantial amount of this new burden is falling on women and mothers. Many women have been forced out of the workplace as a result of needing to be home to care for their children. Women who have remained in the workforce are feeling the stress of being a full-time employee and a full-time teacher to their children. The routines and habits that we previously relied on to keep us sane and give us space to breathe have been taken from us for almost an entire year.
We asked a large audience of working mothers, “How are you keeping your sanity during COVID?” Common themes emerged in the responses received. This further emphasizes that when we get together as a community of mothers, our common experiences can pull us out of isolation and into a circle of love and support. The respite felt by feeling heard or understood can be life-changing.
3 Things to Do Daily to Keep Your Sanity During COVID:
- Support + Community
Grace. Moms mentioned that offering yourself grace is essential in maintaining sanity during COVID-induced lockdowns. This can look like giving yourself grace to step away from work for a moment or taking ten minutes of guilt-free quiet time, despite the many pressing items on your to-do list. When you hear the negative voice of your inner critic in your head, reframe it with a personal reminder that you are doing your best in the midst of a great deal of change, transition, and chaos. Give yourself the grace and space to pause, breathe (diaphragmatically), and remember that you’re killing it, mama!
Movement. Mamas are relying on exercise to keep themselves sane in the time of COVID. Getting creative with movement may be necessary given the current circumstances, and that’s okay. Try ecstatic dance, shake every major joint in your body for five seconds to stimulate blood flow, settle into an at-home workout, join a virtual yoga class, get outside for a hike, opt for an online BIRTHFIT program, or try something new! Many of us no longer have access to our movement modality of choice, but that doesn’t mean we’re cut off from the joy and benefits of movement. Movement is stress relief, movement is self-care, and movement is beneficial for yourself and your capacity to show up for others. When we’re placed under stress or carry a heavier work/emotional load, self-care can be one of the first things tossed out the window. Mama, taking time to care for your body and mind isn’t a luxury nor is it selfish. Set the example to your children that caring for your body is a non-negotiable.
Support + Community. Moms are finding new ways to connect. Some moms have tried wine nights over Zoom, online workout classes, book clubs via video call, or taking advantage of the slower pace and connecting with family more frequently. Motherhood, especially for new mothers, can be an isolating experience. When that isolation is exacerbated by lockdowns, mothers need to work that much harder to stay connected to their support networks. Safely and consciously making efforts to reach out to your circle is so necessary for maternal mental health. We are made for connection, and the COVID-19 pandemic does not change that intuitive need. Get creative, stay in touch, and ask for help.
This pandemic has stolen so much from us; it truly is devastating. However, we can choose to lead our families through this difficult time by highlighting that we’ve grown and met the challenges of today while doing our best. We can emphasize the value of life and model compassion for our children. We can take advantage of the slower pace and limited social calendars by cherishing the precious moments with our family that we might not normally get. You can keep your sanity during COVID by offering yourself grace, moving your body, and remember to both reach out and give support.
BS Communication, M.Ed Advanced Teaching Practices, BIRTHFIT Coach, ISSA CPT, RYT-200, EMT-Basic
Take a look at some of our other posts on mental health:
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