by Rosie Patton
For some of you, getting back into the swing of things started January 4. For those of you who are college students, your process of returning has been more recent. Personally, I just started and have had lots of things happen within the span of these few days. If you are in the same boat, with lots of things happening to you at once, some out of your control or comfort zone, try these tips:
● Start your day early and give yourself time to relax and take things a little slower. For example, try to not look at your phone before bed, and make sure your room is completely dark;
● Make a list of things you want to do and try to follow them within order, when making this list prioritize and make changes if necessary;
● Begin setting reminders for yourself (I use the calendar app on my phone);
● If you live with others, reach out to them let them know your needs an
example could be reaching out to your friends when feeling lonely; maybe you could schedule time together such as dinner once a week;
● Last, but not least, figure out what boundaries you want to establish. An example could be not working past 10pm.
All of these tips may help you begin to figure out how you want your school year or semester to go. It may also be helpful to make a list of goals or new habits and how you want to go about achieving the habits you want to get into. If you feel school is too overwhelming try writing down what it is that you need/want from those around you and rehearse how and when you want to say it.
Burnout was quite common even before the pandemic and it’s imperative to make sure your own needs are met so you do not experience the feeling of burnout: less motivated to do work, feeling irritated by little things, and the feeling of helplessness. Working from home can increase burnout because the line between work and home is blurred. If you are working from home, find a spot in your home that you can work best and reserve that for work only. Personally, I have experienced over the past year that I am someone who needs to get better with setting boundaries. For example I have learned to take time for myself just being alone without always having to be in the presence of others. I have begun to prioritize doing this for myself for at least 20 minutes every day because I know that I need the time. Like Jim Carrey in “Yes Man”, I have a tendency to say “yes” to everything and I am learning that it is okay to say "no". It is okay to put yourself first and focus on you; self care is not selfish and it will benefit you in the long run.
Prioritizing and boundaries can be hard to figure out. Therapy can help you make these decisions for yourself by evaluating the right kinds of choices and behaviors you could modify to get out of this state of feeling stuck.
In working with me, clients getting back in the swing of things would learn be to find out what behaviors and choices could be implemented in a realistic and timely manner. When helping you to decide your own choices we would discuss how each choice fits into your most basic needs, which will help you prioritize the order you want to complete your goals. We would look at work goes into making these goals a reality and even turn negative thoughts into more encouraging thoughts to help you to become the person you want to be.
Need a few more ideas:
21 Tiny Self-Care Rituals That We Guarantee You Have Time to Do.
53 Top Self Care Tips for Taking Care of You During the Coronavirus Pandemic
3, 2, 1 ... Launch!
Welcome to the newly formed and soon to be growing Philadelphia Therapy Collective.