inspiring joy filled living

7 Tips On How To Stay Positive: Stay At Home Edition

May 7, 2020

As I type this we are heading into week 4 of being quarantined due to the COVID-19 pandemic that has swept the entire world.  The walls of our home are more familiar than ever and we are enjoying every bit of sunshine when we can sneak outside between Spring showers.

My kid’s spring break this week has been very different from how we originally imagined it would be.  The disappointment of not getting to go to Great Wolf Lodge for my middle daughter’s 8th birthday hit her hard on Friday, as that was the day that was covered in stickers on our calendar signifying her special trip.  The trip to see my brother in Northern California has also taken a rain check and the many playdates with our friends have been moved to Zoom. 

The abrupt new normal has shaken us all to our cores.  As we head into the completion of month one under the Shelter At Home order and with no concrete end date in place, it is becoming more and more apparent that we need a plan to protect our mental health as much as our physical.  

Here are a few ways I have found to help us stay positive

  1.  Drink water.  This one seems like a really simple no-brainer, but I promise it matters.  As we all know our body is made up of mostly water and it is crucial to our health and brain function that we make sure we are consuming enough.  By drinking more you will feel a difference and I don’t just mean more trips to the bathroom.  Although that might happen too, but hey we’re also getting rid of toxins so that’s actually a good thing!  

For me, I know it helps with my cravings.  This is definitely at play now more than ever because I’m home 24/7 and there’s every excuse in the book to snack: boredom, fear, anxiety, etc.  Did I mention that I also love sugar?  That is my go-to comfort treat of choice and if I’m not careful, it is really easy to overindulge.  By drinking water, it also keeps my hands busy.  I’ve also noticed a big difference in my brain clarity.  When I’m dehydrated, I find it harder to think clearly and right now juggling three kids, homeschooling, work, and everything in between I know I need to be on my A-game.  I aim to drink half my body weight in ounces every day.  For me that looks like 65 oz of water a day. 

I’ve been mixing it up lately by adding slices of lemons or oranges just to give the water a bit of flavor.

  1.  Move Your Body.  Right now this looks like everything from workout videos in my living room to walks around the neighborhood to running on the treadmill in our garage. One thing I know is that when I move my body, my mindset is much more positive and I handle stress better.  Bonus, if you exercise with your kiddos or spouse and get them moving too! I even have a friend that does workouts with her sister over Zoom, what a great way to squeeze in exercise and connect with a real person, which leads me to my next tip…

  1.  Connection.  Since we can’t leave our homes right now, we are finding other ways to connect with people.  In our household, this has looked like phone calls, Facetime, texting, and Zoom chats.  We even celebrated my youngest daughters best buddies birthday with a car parade and movie on the grass–6 ft apart, of course!  Each car was decorated with balloons and banners. As we drove by everyone honked and cheered wildly.  It was so fun to be able to celebrate and have a fun reason to see our friends.  

  1. Read Something Positive.  This is a big one because what we feed our minds is ultimately what will spill out of us.  If we are consuming media that feeds our fear, then fear is what rises up in us.  We should be informed and I’m not saying to turn a blind eye to the news, but I am saying there needs to be a balance.  I love cute, fun videos on Instagram, but I’ve come to realize that I need something more substantial in order to fill my cup.  There are a ton of great books out there on just about everything. Here are some from my list of favorite books.
  1. Do Something You Love. I believe now more than ever we need to find ways to seek joy. To do things that we love. Some of my favorite things are playing the piano, pouring a glass of ice tea with a few slices of oranges and mint, curling up on the couch and taking a nap, turning on anything Rascal Flatts, or even something as simple as lighting a delicious smelling candle. What brings a smile to your face? Maybe browse through your favorite magazine, surf Pinterest, make that new recipe you have been dying to try. Plant an herb garden, arrange flowers, give yourself a DIY pedicure. I have found that even a few minutes of doing something I love or having something fun to look forward to, really does brighten my day.

  1. Eat Well.  I believe that food not only feeds our bodies but it also feeds our soul.  We were designed to eat good, healthy food and when we nourish ourselves then our entire body takes delight in it.  Our brain functions more clearly, we sleep better, and our stress lessens all because we made good choices. I believe a healthy lifestyle can include fresh baked bread and delicious wine because it is all about moderation.  For me, I follow a mostly Paleo/Whole Foods/Arbonne Healthy Living eating guide.  Basically, I aim to eat mostly whole fruits and vegetables, lean meat, fish and chicken, complex carbs like sweet potatoes, and some whole grains like brown rice.  The foods I eat in limited amounts are processed foods, sugar, dairy, some gluten, and alcohol. I’ve found that when I eat like this 70-80% of the time, my body is the happiest and overall I feel my best.  

This trial and error process of learning my body also includes finding out what my triggers are.  For me, they are sugar and coffee.  I have to be very careful with sugar because when I overindulge, my body starts to crave it, and before I know it I’ve become dependent.  When I try to take it away, I experience headaches and other withdrawal symptoms.  It’s tricky and a slippery slope that sneaks up on me most notably in seasons of life that are stressful, like right after I have babies. Or when we’re in a worldwide pandemic.  I’ve had to be incredibly aware so I don’t fall into old habits. 

As far as coffee goes, I occasionally have a cup of decaf but don’t drink regular anymore. It still kind of blows my mind because I LOVED my coffee.  I kid you not, I’d actually dream about going to Starbucks sometimes.  I used to drink 2-3 cups a day, but once I was able to break the habit I realized that my jitters, stomach aches due to the acid, and the wicked crash that would follow were not things I had to live with.  I know many people who drink coffee with no side-effects, I’m just not one of those people. 

When I did Arbonne’s 30 Days to Healthy Living Plan in October of 2018, I couldn’t believe that I could stop drinking regular coffee and not experience all the usual and awful withdrawal symptoms.  In the process, I ended up switching to these energy fizz sticks.

I absolutely love them because they give me a boost of energy without all the side effects I experienced with coffee.  It really was a game-changer.  I know now that taking care of my body has to be a priority because of all the physical, mental, and emotional tasks I put on it.  It is only right that I treat it well.  Plus, who doesn’t want to feel their best?!

Once my body started feeling better, my mental and emotional health followed closely behind.  Which ultimately led to a more positive and joy-filled mindset as well. 

7. Go outside. What a difference going outside and getting some fresh air makes. The change of scenery is also incredibly important as it is easy to get caught up in all the tasks inside the house. I never feel like there’s a lack of chores! Taking a walk, feeling the sunshine, smelling flowers are just so good for the soul. I’ve seen it with my kids too. They are definitely happier and better able to handle their schoolwork. For me, it is so nice to get a mental break even if the view is simply from my backyard.

What are some things you are doing to stay positive while at home? 

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