Dr Becky Lang
April 24, 2020
Put on Our Oxygen Masks First: Three Key Reminders
AsI have been thinking of the challenges all of us have during these days, and an old familiar message from the flight attendant at the start of the flight came to mind, “In the event of an emergency, please put on your oxygen mask before assisting others.”
When we are flying, this is a message most of us tune out – taking care of ourselves in order to take care of others in an event of an emergency. In today’s environment, this phrase, what it implies, the act of taking care of ourselves first, has never been more important.
During these days, consider acting on one of these “oxygen masks”:
Focus on your physical wellbeing:
This is the time to get movement of some type in several times each day whether it is a walk around the block, a stretch at our desk, or a dance party. Get some type of movement in several times each day. Eat whole foods full of phytonutrients such as berries, vegetables, fruits, whole grains and minimizing sugar, boxed and packaged foods. Minimizing T. V. and screen time especially before bed so we can get regular and restful sleep. For sure, one thing we can all do is smile more often.
Reach out and talk to someone:
Stay connected to important people in your life. In times of uncertainty, many of us draw inward, retreat. What we know, to be healthy and well is to reach out to others and share what is going on. Many have connected with others through zoom or Facetime, a phone call or email to check up with others. This is a good time to remember birthdays and send a card or reach out through a phone call. Take the first step.
Do something that brings joy and meaning:
What energizes your day? What are the activities you enjoy that can help someone else? Maybe it is making a loaf of banana bread and giving it away, maybe it is calling a friend, going on a walk, reading a good book or bible passage, listening to music or an uplifting podcast - helping out where you can. What can you incorporate in your day that brings joy and meaning? Name it and do it.
What “oxygen masks” are you reaching for that are helpful?
Let’s put on our oxygen mask first: truly a way to take care of ourselves and others well.
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