This may be silly topic to start the year off with, but I am sure many of you are now experiencing the benefits of taking a break, albeit a short one, over the Christmas period. It is very easy to just keep pushing yourself and wait for the “right time” to take a break, so as a reminder, I would recommend that the right time is to plan ahead to take regular breaks throughout the year so you prepare your body for a break. Stress has a nasty habit of creeping up on you as some of you will know. If you don’t take regular breaks, your stressed body will force you to take a break with illness. So in 2020 take care of you first.
Look for more helpful videos on stress “Tit bits and other useful or useless information”.
I think the first time I really became aware of this situation was when I was a Charge Nurse and had clients in for respite care. Without fail, the person would come into care for a couple of weeks to give the home carer a break, but the home carer would become so unwell they couldn’t enjoy the break. More often than not it was usually with some viral infection, but it often rendered them incapable of being able to visit their loved one. They were forced to take a rest.
You see soldiering on for long periods of time does not serve you. Being a martyr has few rewards, if any, because in the end your body, or should I say your emotions, are in charge and will force your body to rest. You see, everyone has a susceptibility to certain conditions: a tipping point within your body so this year, see how can you protect yourself from the susceptibility of certain conditions?
You see everything you do today, affects your DNA and has an impact on you at some stage later in life. Also, as you age, you become more susceptible to certain conditions. For instance, dry skin and orifices make it easier for bacteria and virus’ to enter the body. This is why moisturising the skin, nasal passages and eyes is so important. It helps to protect your body. Have a look at this research on chronic stress and the effects on longevity:
Have you ever been overseas on a wonderful holiday only to find you become sick either when you get there or when you get home? One article I read claimed that the quick turnaround of planes has led to substandard cleaning of the planes, so virus’ and bacteria stay on the surfaces, tray tables and arm rests. Having had one bad experience with being ill overseas, I now combat that by wiping down my tray table and arm rests as soon as I get into my seat. I then use a moisturising nasal spray and eye drops throughout the flight as well as drinking as much water as I can. So, keeping the skin, and mucous membrane in the mouth, nose and eyes does offer protection. You can read more in this article…
Now there is very good reason to keep your skin and mucous membrane hydrated all of the time to help protect your body against the many bacteria and virus’ that cohabit with us. They are not going to go away. They have just as much right to be in this world as we do, and we need them. They are not all harmful to us but if we provide the right environment then of course they are going to make us unwell.
So let’s talk about some things that can help you to remain balanced and free from sickness.
- Obviously the first thing is to take regular breaks throughout the year. While it may be desirable to take one long break, the reality is that you have to wait a long time to get that break. Taking shorter breaks more often, with at least one of them a 2 week break, will help.
- Keep your skin and mucous membrane moist and well hydrated so drink lots of water, use nasal clear sprays and eye drops especially when flying but all year round too. As I said earlier, definitely more important as you get older.
- Get plenty of sleep and rest. While I know sleep can elude many the body needs to replenish itself from the daily activities you conduct. If you cannot sleep, learn to meditate or study mindfulness techniques
- Nourish your body with food that supports your body. Avoid take away foods that are loaded in salt, fat and who know what other additives. Add some raw food like salads to your diet.
- Get some exercise. Remember exercise is cumulative. You don’t have to go out for an hours walk or pump away at a gym to get the benefits. Three x 10 minute walks will do as much good as one 30 minute walk. When you go shopping, park as far away as you can from where you are going to go and get your walk in that way.
- Don’t let your inner voice run away with you. The quality of your self-talk will determine the outcome of your day. If you think of every day as being a blessing, and that all things that happen are just an event that will pass, then it will lower your stress levels. In essence don’t allow yourself to over-react to any situation.
- Take some time for yourself each day. Whether it is to read a book, sit in the sun, meet up with friends or meditate. This will rejuvenate you. You know housework and other things we think are important will wait until you are ready.
Now with tongue in cheek, I have put this video up for you to see. The images I hope will give you a laugh – hardly appropriate to you no doubt, but the messages are good. So read the captions and smile!
So, take care of yourself. Don’t put your own health at risk by neglecting yourself. You are important. If your job is too stressful, then change it and find something else or get some support. You do not want to subject yourself to some long-term health condition because you put yourself last.