Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be locked up at home with three (highly energetic) kids, due to a global pandemic.
When life is ‘normal’, my household is incredibly busy and incredibly social. COVID-19 has certainly had an impact on my family, and to be honest, I hadn’t realised what a social bunch we are! Transitioning from our everyday activities (we can fit a LOT into 24 hours) to life in isolation has felt like one big rollercoaster. Some days are up, some days are down, and then there are days that feel up, down, sideways and inside out! The challenges have been coming thick and fast, and trying to home school my lot has cemented two things I already knew: 1) teachers are amazing, and 2) I never want to be one.
Now I am certainly no expert at isolation life, nor do I do all the things perfectly every day – far from it, in fact! But one thing is for certain: my family likes to live life to the full, and we are embracing the forced pause in our lives.
One definite benefit from Iso is the treatments my skin has been getting as we prepare and share our La Bella home facial series! Facials for me are often few and far between, so believe me when I say my skin loves Iso! You know what my skin doesn’t love? Stress. Stress can be so damaging to your skin, and although it’s pretty unavoidable for most of us at present, I thought I’d share the five biggest lessons I’ve learned that will help you reduce stress (and potentially save your skin!)
STRUCTURE: Planning your day is crucial.
Take a few minutes every morning to map out your day. I find this creates structure for not only me, but for the people who need it most: the kids. They’re familiar with the structure of a school day, but to expect them to stick to that same structure at home is unrealistic. What we do instead is plan our time and keep our plan visible so that they know what’s happening and when. This significantly reduces the constant nagging (particularly about when and what is for lunch), and significantly reduces the chance of me losing my temper.
TAKE A (WELL DESERVED) BREAK: Our day consists of designated breaks when we go outside, watch a movie or the kids have some quiet alone time, doing what they choose Everyone needs a break – and that also includes from each other.
FEED YOUR MIND, BODY + SOUL: Yes, it’s easy to sit on the lounge, eat rubbish food and maybe feel sorry for ourselves, but that’s not going to nourish us. Join a friend (virtually of course), or subscribe to one of the many different at home exercise programs available online to get you moving. Practice some mindfulness, create and recite your daily affirmations, or connect with nature. Take in the moment fully surrounding you: What do you hear? What do you see and smell? You’ll be amazed what you notice when you start to tune in, and this is a good one for the kids to practice mindfulness, too!
MANAGE STRESS levels: Yes, I know, easier said then done! BUT it’s 100% essential. A body continually flooded with stress hormones is not a happy body, AND being in a constant state of stress deprives our skin of the oxygen and nutrients it needs to build healthy new baby cells and look bright, radiant and healthy. Signs of increased stress levels include: dark circles, puffy face, poor immunity, breakouts and congestion, dehydration or waking up feeling a hundred years old.
So how do we manage this, you ask? My go-to solutions are guided meditations, intense workout sessions (I love my boxing bag, it’s a double whammy: exercise AND stress relief!) and ditch the sugar for antioxidant rich foods, such as leafy greens and berries to reduce oxidative stress.
CONNECT with family & friends: No, we can’t jump in the car and go visit whoever we want, but technology has its advantages. It’s easier than ever to stay connected with Facetime, Skype and House Party. We’re missing our friends and family like crazy, so it’s really important to maintain those connections – it’s human nature! This is also the perfect time to reconnect with old friends, or to rebuild relationships you’ve let slide in the busy-ness of ‘real life’.
For us, life as we know it has taken a turn – and some days I would give my left arm to be able to go and sit in a café for fifteen minutes alone! If you can embrace this forced pause you’re going to get through it a little easier. And let me be clear: nobody has it all together, and there is no right or wrong way to navigate these uncertain times.
From one mumma to another, the comeback is ALWAYS stronger than the setback. Trust me. Hang in there.
Love, health and happy days
Skin + Wellbeing
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