Editor’s Note: We asked the COVID Support VT counselors for their best self-care tips. Here’s what Nate Reit said. Nate answers the “warmline” (2-1-1, option #2) and facilitates virtual workshops for COVID Support VT. Join his Gratitude Workshop here.
This is part one in a series of three. Stay tuned for more self-care tips from Support Counselors Cecilia Hayes and Alex Karambelas.
COVID Support VT Counselor Nate Reit has a few go-to self-care tips that he not only recommends but uses himself. “I have found these helpful anytime I want to clear my mind and calm my emotions,” he says.
You can adapt these practices to your own circumstances and lifestyle or use them as inspiration. Even if we can’t imagine finding time in our day for a “practice” or only have a few minutes, we can apply mindful self-care to everything we do. Having our own go-to reset button — whatever that is that works for us — is a step in the right direction.
Nate’s Go-To Self-Care Tips
Breathe and Transform
Practice a few minutes of deep breathing. I have found the Wim Hof Method very transformational.
Take a Self-Care Walk
Go on a guided meditation walk. Sometimes I want the clarity and calming feeling that can come with listening to a guided meditation, but in the moment I feel antsy. I need to move around and want to get some fresh air. I find that a slow-paced walk (somewhere safe, during the day) with my headphones on, listening to a relaxing guided meditation with my eyes open is just what I need. Sometimes I’ll even find a bench or a rock to sit on after a while and close my eyes to finish the meditation. It’s really the getting-up-and-out that jumpstarts this healing practice for me!
Here is a 10-minute guided meditation I created that you might like to try. We also have some wonderful recommendations in the resources section on our website.
Strike a Self-Care Pose
Spend a minute (or several) in a relaxing or empowering yoga pose. I have found both “child’s pose” and “downward dog” to be very therapeutic for me. I have learned that changing our physiology can absolutely help to change our emotional state. Holding a simple posture that makes you feel safe, strong, loved, peaceful, or whatever it is you need at the moment, can be a huge help. I like to keep my yoga mat set up in my room or the living room so I can walk over and do this throughout the day if I need to. If you don’t have a yoga mat, this can just as easily be done on a carpet, a towel on the floor, or any comfortable surface.
JOIN COVID SUPPORT VT’S WORKSHOP ON GRATITUDE WITH NATE REIT
Read Nate’s Guest Blog on Gratitude as a Wellness Practice.
Need to talk?
Call 2-1-1 (option #2) or 866-652-4636 (option #2) for free, confidential, one-on-one counseling. Our Support Counselors are available Monday – Friday.
If you or someone you care for is experiencing thoughts of suicide or self-harm, you can: call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-825; text VT to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor 24/7; connect with your local community mental health agency for 24/7 support.
Find resources and tools for coping with stress at www.COVIDSupportVT.org. Follow COVID Support VT on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. And, to stay up-to-date, sign up for our newsletter and blog.
Learn about upcoming Wellness Workshops from COVID Support VT, and Town Halls we’re hosting in partnership with community organizations.
One-click translation to 100 languages of most everything on the COVIDSupportVT.org website, plus Multilingual Resources & downloadable materials in 10 languages common to Vermont’s New American immigrant and refugee communities.
COVID Support VT is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and Federal Emergency Management Agency, managed by Vermont’s Departments of Emergency Management and Mental Health, and administered by Vermont Care Partners, a statewide network of 16 non-profit community-based agencies providing mental health, substance use, and intellectual and developmental disability services and supports.