I am a huge advocate for the idea of “you do you,” especially when it comes to mental health. A lot of conditions make a “normal” life schedule difficult to navigate and you need to know what you need. A low-stress 9-to-5 job can still be exhausting as I have found out. Although I push people to take time for themselves to recharge, I am very bad at following that advice. Most of the time I work myself until I shut down for 4 days from exhaustion. Yesterday I called in sick and took my first mental health day that wasn’t accompanied by physical illness. How did I spend it?
I slept in until the afternoon and I didn’t feel bad about it.
I had been sleeping poorly and I know it contributed to my feelings of exhaustion and wanting a day off. I stayed in bed and laid in the sun. It felt amazing. I got out of bed rested and full of energy and the sunny day wasn’t hurting either.
Put on Netflix and got ready for a run.
Spring is finally here but the sun is still on its way down by the time I get home from work. I took advantage of being home in the afternoon to get some exercise in. I put on an episode of The 100, which I can’t stop watching no matter how hard I try and no matter how much I dislike Clarke. I made myself a pre-workout snack, got dressed, and did some warm-ups in my room. I finally got to use the FlipBelt that I got for Christmas. I packed my key, iPod and extra Kleenex.
The run was amazing and if I didn’t run out of Kleenex I probably would have stayed out there. My mom gave me a puffer that took care of my cold air asthma (coughing and wheezing), so the half hour I spent out there just felt like flying. After a February that did not get warmer than -15°C, it felt so liberating to go out there and feel the sun and breathe the air.
Self-care like a motherfucker.
After my run I took a lavish shower to end all lavish showers. Okay, maybe not that lavish, but I used my expensive LUSH products. Back in October I splurged on a tub of Ro’s Argan body conditioner and decided that it would be my reward for working out.
Every time I use that stuff I come out of the shower feeling like an absolute goddess. After the shower of champions I used their Wiccy Magic Muscles massage bar to ease my muscle soreness, then got my top half all made up and pretty.
Do something productive!
For me, that was shooting my next video. Getting that off my plate took it off my mind giving me some more mental ease. Maybe doing work on a mental health day isn’t for everyone, but this is the work that I want to be doing rather than the work I put myself through for a pay check. Your productivity can be anything. I also like to craft to feel productive because I spend time doing something creative and at the end of my session I made something. I made something with my hands.
Chill with friends.
By the time I was finished filming, Kim came home from work and we spent some time together. We fixed ourselves some dinner and watched a Disney movie — this time it was Atlantis. I’m a sucker for anything based around the legend, and Milo totally reminded me of Daniel Jackson from the Stargate series.
I went to bed feeling like I had spent the day wisely, got things done, and took care of my body. Any notion of guilt I had for taking the day off work had melted away because I knew I really needed this. I probably need it more than I allow myself to have it, but hey I gotta make money somehow.