We are a little over a week into our experiment with self care, and as promised we’re reporting back. It’s been interesting so far! (If you want a quick recap on what we committed to trying, you can find it here.) Some of it is going very well and some of it is going terribly.
Enough preamble; let’s cut to the chase. Here’s what’s working.
Using less social media: We both took social media apps off our phones. It is almost embarrassing to admit what an immediate, big impact that created. It turns out we each have a habit of opening up Facebook or Instagram and sort of mindlessly scrolling through posts almost constantly. Riding in the elevator? Check Facebook. Standing in line at Starbucks? Facebook. Walking kids to school? Instagram. Social media can be absolutely great but it can also be a time-sucking, stress-inducing void, and recently for both of us it’s been the latter. Removing those apps means we’re using social media more mindfully, and getting more time and positive energy back in our days. (Also, Twitter is just a bunch of people yelling at each other, particularly in this political climate. Getting off Twitter for a while is good for the soul.)
Drinking a bunch of water: YES TO THIS. After only a few days of regularly refilling the water bottles that sit on our desks, we started craving water more and more. Plus we felt less hungry and more cheerful. Water is great! Drink lots of water! This one is easy and might legitimately make you feel better.
Foam rolling: Truth be told, Erin hates foam rolling. It hurts. But wow, do we feel great afterwards. We both spend too much time sitting at our desks and too many days running around in high heels. Foam rolling is such an effective way to get rid of some of the resulting muscle tension and soreness. Big thumbs up to foam rolling; we will keep going with this one. (Also we can do it while watching The Crown on Netflix, so it’s basically relaxing multi-tasking.)
Connecting with friends IRL: This one has been so great we’re going to do an entire separate post about it. Suffice it to say, our friends are wonderful. We love them and we need them. Yes to friends.
OK, now it’s honesty time. Here’s what’s not going well.
Using a meditation app: Meh. Yes, we feel better and more relaxed after we meditate. And Erin will admit to falling asleep more quickly on the nights she’s done it. But after only a couple of days, using the app started feeling like a chore, something to be crammed in among our evening tasks of packing lunches, reviewing homework, and loading the dishwasher. We’re going to keep trying, because we have many friends who are true believers in mediation and sing its praises as a life-changer. But we’re not sold yet.
Drinking less wine: Meh to this too. We got super mindful about our drinking (despite our blog’s name, our drinking has never been crazy excessive, so we’re talking about cutting out the single glass we each drink most nights) and honestly it didn’t make a big difference. Mindfulness about alcohol is most definitely a good thing, and we encourage it! But skipping our glass of wine didn’t noticeably improve our sleep or make us feel amazing the next morning. We’ll keep it up though – maybe this will change with more time.
Being less critical, treating ourselves to small kindnesses, and getting out in nature: We completely failed to do any of this. That’s how absurd we are; we could not manage to squeeze a single solo coffee shop trip or hike into our schedules. We could not remember to say nice things to ourselves. It just didn’t happen. We suspect we need to try a little harder to be kind to ourselves. These were fails and they shouldn’t have been.
OK, that’s the update on us. How are you doing? Any self-care failures or successes you’d care to share? Onward!