Simple new habits to help the world and yourself.
You’ve heard the saying: “It takes 21-days to create or break habits”. Well, I did a little research, and it turns out the jury is out as to the timeframe. Much like the lockdown. However, we have been instructed to spend 21-days at home, and this presents us with choices. In the lead up to the lockdown, I have felt anxious. I have felt odd. I have felt such overwhelming sadness at the loss of life. I have felt elation seeing dolphins in the Venice canals. I’ve turned CNN on to stay informed, and I’ve wanted to throw the TV in the bin so that I can remain uninformed. I’ve deleted Facebook from my phone and added it back on – a few times. And, to be clear, I’m not bipolar. These are unprecedented times. If I zoom out, I see our round world attached to a yo-yo string. As a child, my yo-yo was often entangled, and I’d have to re-loop the string before I could start playing again. Maybe our world is doing just that.
However, this morning I woke up to ‘DAY 1’, and it felt ok. I felt ok. I made a personal decision. I want to use these 21-days to be the fittest and healthiest version of me. Yes, this is only day one, but I am intent on using this time to create positive habits. They’re simple additions to add to our lock downtime. All can be done in the home. It’s about mind, body, and soul. It’s about self, others, and earth.
I’ll start with the most crucial habit first because, without the earth, we have nothing.
1. Commit to more earth-loving habits.
Just as I was abdicating not over-thinking, Mother Nature declared: ‘I think it’s high time you guys give a lot of thought to a lot of things. You’ve been saying you’re too busy to find even 5 minutes of quiet time in your day. You don’t appreciate what I show you. What I implore of you. So, here’s some time to think. In fact, here’s a whole heap of it.’
Her statement arrived with a scant warning. She pretty much scolded us overnight? But that’s not true. She’s thrown an overabundance of finger-wagging our way, ‘I’m going to count down from 10,’ she warned. Some of her children did begin to listen and began to make small but essential changes. Stop-the-bus hands began declining plastic straws. This, despite discovering that a milkshake with a tower of whipped cream and sprinkles ends up mainly in your nostrils. Some of us recycled. More eyes opened to the positive impact of plant-based eating. While global activism bought the effects of emissions front-of-house. Much of this noise came from a younger generation refusing to see their future go up in smoke. There was (is) a sense of awakening.
However, it remained the global majority that glared at Mother Nature, defiantly stomping their feet with fists bunched tightly, and continued their destructive behaviour. The bratty defiance meant they didn’t hear the progression of her countdown. ‘3, 2, 1…’ she said. Her boundaries and those of other living creatures had not been respected. Finally, she shook her head in sadness and peered at us above her horn-rimmed glasses, ‘I’m not telling you again.’
She began by packing away some of our favourite toys. ‘What? MOOOOMMMM! No, please don’t take those away’, we pleaded. But, alas, out came giant, dusty cardboard boxes and into storage went the movie houses, the clubs, and the festivals. Including Splashy Fen, dammit. She sealed them with danger tape while ignoring our doe-eyed stares. She even closed all the restaurants and sent us to bed by 6pm. She limited our playdates with friends. She even told us not to hug them. Suddenly elbows weren’t being used as self-defense but in greeting. It felt odd. It began to feel real. Our playground was shutting down.
She then grounded us literally and figuratively. She took away our aeroplanes and told us not to leave the house. Governments from almost a third of the world instructed lockdowns. Ours has been set at 21 days. But in our minds, we’re asking whether Mother Nature is going to ground us for three weeks, a month, or a year? We haven’t been given a timeframe from a force far more powerful than any government. This is uncomfortable for us, because as a global society, we run according to times, to deadlines, to stopwatches that celebrate top speeds. This concept of not-knowing feels like bad indigestion. ‘How long?’ we ask. No answer.
There is great sadness and loss during this time. That’s the lesson. A harsh one. However, there’s also opportunity to heal. We can use this history-making time to form new habits that contribute to mother nature and all living creatures. These habits, however, need to be on-going to do good by the climate. Use these 21 days to research how you can introduce earth-kindness into your everyday life. Let’s be honest, you have plenty of time to read and educate yourself!
Control. Alt. Delete.
Let’s nurture Mother Nature, and she’ll nurture us back. Write down your commitments and stick them on the fridge. Let them serve as a reminder of the most critical life lesson ever sent.
2. Add immune-boosting healthy habits
The subject of immune-boosting is understandably on everyone’s lips. I do my best to eat well. Packets of Skittles do their best to ensure I don’t. I’m one of those binge-msg-eaters. I mean, have you tasted streaky bacon flavoured chips?
However, the theory around healthy eating is relatively simple: minimise processed foods and prioritise whole foods. I try my best to do that as well as adding these simple liquid additions to my routine. Let’s keep our immunity strong:
The big green machine juice
I was recently introduced to an easy-to-make-at-home Immune boosting juice. It tastes a whole lot better than it looks, so don’t let the green give you the greens before you’ve given it a go. Get into the habit of drinking a glass every day. Get the whole family into the habit. The ingredients alkaline your body naturally. There remains debate as to whether an alkaline diet does aid in the reduction of disease. However, what we do know is that ingesting antioxidants, vitamins, and nutrients can only be beneficial to your health:
Granny Smith apple
You will need a blender. I suggest doing big batches so that you take the schlep out of daily cutting and chopping. It will keep in your fridge for at least 3 days. The breakdown of how much of what just comes down to common sense, and taste preference. You’ll soon figure out what works best for you. So, sip away, knowing you are cleansing your blood, hydrating your cells, boosting your calcium, and adding to your overall digestive health.
The Golden Tumeric Berry Booster
And for another daily boost, I love this Booster created by Nadine*. I intend to add this to our mid-afternoon routine before that slump kicks in. Nadine is an online fitness and nutrition coach (please send Coddiwomple a message should you wish to arrange a Skype info session with Nadine)
½ tsp turmeric
½ cup plant milk
Handful of frozen berries (preferably mulberries)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp sugar-free peanut butter
*”As a Health Coach, I know that the body is happier getting its vitamins and minerals the natural way. This Booster is filled with blood stabilisers and energy-boosting vitamins and minerals I know my body will love” – Nadine, certified nutrition and wellness specialist and personal trainer
3. Create mood-boosting habits
Ironically, my first blog written just 5-ish weeks ago is entitled 7 ways to protect your freedom in a caged world. Then boom! Just a few weeks later, our freedom was restricted to our homes, never mind the world. Suddenly the messages of ‘living in the moment’ and ‘appreciating the small things’ have become crystal clear. It wasn’t just talk.
That flower – I will stop and smell it. That ocean – I will run and jump into it. Those crazy nights out – I’ll never regret them. And hugging? Friends, I will squish you like never before – be warned.
It’s at times like these that true characters unfold. Who will pace like a caged tiger, who will help, who will whine, who will encourage? Never before has a stable relationship with your spouse been more critical. I worry for some. Confined space can form a pressure cooker. Stay close to your friends (virtually speaking) – check in on them. We need to get creative. We need outlets. We need constructive ways to blow off steam. We need to stay healthy – mind and body. Think positively! Use this opportunity to do a Life Coaching Course if need be – the timing couldn’t be more perfect (message Coddiwomple for available online coaches).
Don’t eye-roll. I know it’s the obvious one, but it’s never been more essential. I frequently choose to workout rather than go to the gym, generally due to time constraints. So, for me, this home-training is a natural transition – I’ve been following Holly Dolke’s YouTube channel for a few months, and her simple routines bring good results. She is currently offering a free 30-day quarantine workout, which we started this morning. The sessions are short. The beauty of the short duration is that there is no excuse not to exercise. You’re being outright lazy if you can’t fit in 10 minutes – truth be told. However, if you’re having an energetic morning, then it’s easy to add another session or torture a targeted body part into supermodel perfection. Sometimes being confronted with a 1-hour workout can stop you from exercising altogether. So, I believe this top-up option works best.
What I will really miss are my hot yoga classes. That’s a little trickier to replicate at home. The hot part that is. However, if this is my only sacrifice, then I can call myself immensely blessed. Again, there are numerous YouTube yoga sessions to be found. We are planning a 5 – 6pm home yoga session every day. This yoga habit will not only keep our bodies elasticated but will keep our minds from snapping.
I spoke a fair bit about meditation in a previous blog. Still, I’d like to remind and encourage you to download the Insight Timer meditation app. This has become and will continue to be a nightly habit for me. My husband had to take my earphones out the other night because I’d drifted off to sleep. It’s heavenly. It’s so peaceful. And you can pick the meditation that calls to you the most at that moment. You’ll hold your hand to your heart and inadvertently put out good energy into the universe. We need that collective energy now.
Don’t let yourself go.
In summary, lockdown is not the time to loaf on the couch. You still need to look at yourself in the mirror, you still need peace in your heart, and you still need a calm mind. So, feel free to ditch your makeup and bra for 21 days, but don’t ditch the exploring of the habits as mentioned earlier – stay healthy physically and mentally. And plan fun things. Message me some of your fun lockdown plans, and I can share them in next week’s blog for all to enjoy.
Our first fun thing:
Tomorrow evening I suggested my husband and I go for a candlelight dinner. The good news is we don’t need to pay an Uber to get us to our veranda. I plan on styling my hair. Wearing a little black number. And donning some red lipstick. I won’t be wearing heels because I haven’t undergone a personality transformation. Does he even know how lucky he is? Just kidding, he does – I tell him all the time ;).
Your habit list broken down:
1. Learn about how you can help the environment and other living creatures
2. Exercise for at least 10-minutes every morning
3. Eat mindfully with a diet that revolves where possible around whole foods
4. Drink a glass of the Big Green Machine Juice after breakfast
5. Boost your afternoon with the Golden Tumeric Berry Booster
6. Do a yoga session or some other form of exercise early evening
7. Meditate or practice your chosen form of spirituality
8. Let go. But don’t let yourself go.
Let’s just coddiwomple