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Here’s Your Well-Being Checklist as We Emerge From COVID

June 29, 2021

As the Wellness Manager for Hartford HealthCare, I try to walk the wellness talk as much as possible. Even as COVID-19 seems under control for now in Connecticut, we all need a timeout for ourselves.

“Self-care is small things over time, but they come from giving yourself permission to treat yourself as well as you others,” says Dr. Jennifer Ferrand, Hartford HealthCare’s Director of Well-Being.

Here are some of my favorite self-care snacks for you to treat yourself:

I start and end my day outside.

Spending time outdoors in the fresh air and daylight, even for a few minutes, does wonders for my mood.

I leave work at work.

I wash my hands and say enough is enough for today. There will always be one more thing to do. Allowing yourself to be OK with what you accomplished for the day can help you enjoy your down time.

I check-in with my squad.

Group text or FaceTime with friends. We all have a basic human need for connection with someone or many who share our experiences. Supporting each other in small ways helps us feel cared for and understood, even in difficult times.

I move.

Even if it is only for 5 or 10 minutes, exercise or movement can help boost my energy, help me feel less stressed, and sometimes gets the creative juices flowing to generate new ideas. Take a quick walk around the office, climb the stairs, stand up and stretch or do a few jumping jacks. I try to do something every hour if I can.

I say NO.

For many of us “Yessers” out there, we can have a hard time saying no. Creating healthy boundaries, delegating when appropriate can be incredibly freeing. Having too many commitments, or too much on your plate can take a toll on your well-being.

I read.

A book with pages! Particularly fiction or a mystery. It’s a way to be transported to a different world and it takes my mind off day-to-day stressors. Audiobooks are a great alternative if you have a long commute or prefer to listen to the story.

I drink water.

A lot of water. Staying hydrated helps my whole body, especially my energy and joints. Plain water isn’t always my favorite so I like to add fruit, veggies and sometimes herbs. Lemon-cucumber-mint is my favorite combination. How much do you need? Divide your bodyweight by two and that’s how many ounces you need per day.

I am my own cheerleader.

I write words, phrases or lyrics on Post-it notes and put them on my bathroom mirror or my computer monitor, or I share them on my huddle board. We all need positive reinforcement.

I use the checklist.

It helps me to bring closure to my day and allows me to be more present with my family.

Self-care isn’t selfish. It’s necessary.

We need it to take better care of of each other and our patients. Practice it, role model it, support it!