Challenging Times Self Care Challenge: Day 4
Welcome to Day 4 of the Challenging Times Self Care Challenge.
Before we start discussing the challenge for Day Four, the Day Three challenge was to answer the question: What are three things you are grateful for right now?
As I had mentioned in the Day Three challenge episode, getting into the habit of intentionally thinking about things that you are grateful for, especially during challenging times, will eventually become a thought habit where you will notice that your thoughts will also start to include ways in which you are grateful.
Or moreover, you may find that your thoughts and perspectives about things will start to feel more counterbalanced.
That is, if you notice that you may have a tendency toward critical or worrying thoughts, Introducing a gratitude practice may help you to also start thinking about these very same things with an additional perspective.
And this might ultimately mean that you can have a more balanced point of view, which may also have a positive benefit to your mental health.
When it comes to practicing gratitude, you could decide to use it as a tool whenever you may need it.
So feel free to go back and listen to the Day Three episode whenever it might be helpful for you to go through the prompts of asking yourself what three things you’re grateful for in the moment.
Or you might decide, for instance, to add it to your morning routine as we discussed on Day One, or to consider adding it to your evening routine before going to bed as well.
You might even decide to do both. The reason for the suggestion to add it to your evenings is that by going through the gratitude practice at night, it can be a way for you to cap off the day and signal to your brain that you’re in rest mode.
I’d love to know how you made out with day three of the challenge. What are the things that you’re grateful for right now? Please feel free to leave me a comment below.
Day Four: Acts of Kindness
Day Four Self care prompt is to ask the question: What are three acts of kindness you can do today?
So the day that I’m recording and releasing this, is April 1st, 2020.
A few days ago at DanCooleDaily on Twitter made a suggestion to have April Kindness Day, rather than April Fool’s Day.
I thought it was a really lovely idea.
And while you might not be reading this on the 1st of April, I also don’t think kindness needs to be limited to April Kindness Day.
Again, absolute credit goes to DanCooleDaily for sparking the idea for this challenge episode today. He’s very engaged, vulnerable, and honest about himself and about the importance of mental health on Twitter.
Maybe you might consider sending him a kind word his way as part of today’s challenge.
One of the things that can be true for many of us, including myself, is that we can have kindness for others more openly and willingly and easily, maybe more than we can sometimes have for ourselves.
In fact, I remember when I first started therapy… which feels like a millennia ago… one of the first ‘aha’ type moments I had with my therapist.
It was when she asked me how would I feel if the kinds of things that I was saying to myself, I were to hear someone else say to one of my loved ones: How would I feel or what would I do?
It really hit me like a ton of bricks.
Because the stuff that goes on in my brain that I tell myself at any given time, if someone said these things to someone that I love, I would absolutely, unequivocally get into some kind of a fight or altercation with them.
And it was a reminder to me, or it was a true revelation, really, to me, how harsh we can be or how, how I know how hard I can be on myself.
I also know that I’m not alone in this.
So I think that when we’re talking about a kindness practice or to think about how we can be kind, it can be helpful for us to think about ourselves first.
And just as I mentioned, my first act of kindness is going to be for myself, and what I’m going to do is to give myself permission, or I’m going to allow myself an hour to do absolutely nothing today at some point.
It’s one thing to find myself not doing anything and then feeling badly about it, but it can be very different to intentionally give myself this hour instead of feeling like and having an expectation of myself to just be getting things done all the time.
The second thing I’m going to do is to make sure to do today is to let my husband know how much I appreciate him, especially during this time for being so even keeled while also I also realize that he’s managing the best he could under the present circumstances too.
And despite that, he’s been so supportive and calm throughout this whole thing. So I plan on making him a nice dinner later today as one way of me showing my appreciation for him.
And thirdly, I have an online buddy who mentioned that they weren’t feeling well earlier this week, so I’ll check in and see how they’re doing.
I think kindness can be as simple as expressing appreciation or acknowledgement, but it can be more involved like volunteering or getting groceries for others, if you’re happening to be venturing out today.
Again, Day Four of the Self Care Challenge is: What are three acts of kindness you can do today?
So I hope you join me in this Challenging Times Self Care Challenge because we’re all in this together and this might just be one small way for us to get through it together, too.
Please share how you’re doing in general, but also how you’re doing with the challenges themselves. You can reach on Twitter or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or Instagram, too. I’d love to share what you’re doing and even suggestions for a future challenge on future episodes.
Stay safe and in good health!