If I had to pick one word to describe the last couple months, it would be:
You know. I don’t even have to explain it to you. You see the news. You see these GAS PRICES! All while you’re just trying to live life too.
I had my own, perfectly lovely plans for my own money. And boy, what I THOUGHT I’d be doing with my time the last few months and what I actually needed to do with my time Did. Not. Match.
Maybe you know what I mean.
Now, there’s a version of me that used to go buck-wild over changes in “the plan.” But the pandemic of course broke that habit all the way down.
I’m sitting here with all that’s going on and I’m fine! And not, like meme-style, “this is fine.” I’m actually fine for realsies, so here are some suggestions based on what I’ve been doing to keep myself sane.
1: Start with your basic needs.
Stress can change your eating, sleep, movement, social and other habits.
Do the things that make your body run well. That may look different for you than it does for me, and it might take some creativity, but when you’re starting to feel flooded and overwhelmed, pause and check-in real quick:
When’s the last time I ate? Saw the sun? Had water? Moved my body? Called my bestie?
Address the basics first. It’ll calm a lot of the mental alarm bells. And the feeling of being in control won’t fix everything but it will help you get in a problem-solving headspace.
2: Be honest with yourself about the habits that make you feel worse.
Just between you and me, how do you really feel when you drink, smoke, toke, or demolish that pint of ice cream? How do you feel when you call that toxic FWB?
How do you feel 2 hours later?
How do you feel 12 hours later?
How do you feel for the rest of the week?
Look, all drugs have effects and side-effects. If you’re not at your best after you lean on that old habit from college, it’s totally okay to take a couple weeks off of it and notice how you feel. You might realize it’s actually doing more harm than good.
I’m not here to judge. We all have habits. I’m just saying this because I care: You’re going to need to face our current world with ALL of your resources. If something you’re doing is making you start your day depleted, address it today.
3: STOP Multitasking.
How many tabs are open on your browser right now as you’re reading this? How many mental tabs are open in your mind?
There are dozens of books and articles about how the more you multitask the worse you get at it. The brain science on this is amazing but trust and believe, you will feel more sane as soon as you start living by the rule:
Be. Here. Now.
In each moment, take a second to decide on the one thing that has your full attention. Complete the thing. Then decide on the next “one thing” and do that. Repeat.
I mean this seriously, and I mean it for all types of multi-tasking.
- Check texts at specific times instead of carrying on whole conversations all day long.
- When you’re watching Netflix, put your phone away and actually enjoy the show.
- When you’re working, swap the podcast for instrumental music.
- Look at the food you’re eating and finish eating it before you make that phone call.
- Watch the news, and cry if you need to. Then turn it off or close the app and choose the next thing that you’ll do.
You already know things are wild in these streets. I wish I could fix it all for you, me, and everyone else. I know I can’t. But I also know that the best way to handle this mess is to get more of what you need AND to less of what you don’t. So start with that.
Wanna chat? You know where to find me.