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2020 was a nightmare come to life. While Covid-19 is yet to be eradicated, there are some things within our control that we can work on so we'll can be more physical and mentally prepared for this new year. Here are some valuable expert tips from Women's Health to help us face what may be a tougher year ahead.
Self-care is here to stay.
Your skincare and beauty rituals should be able to bring you joy and delight. Take your time and slow down while applying your skincare, especially in the evening, as that helps your brain transition from work mode to Zen mode. Licensed clinical social worker and founder of Alyssa Marie Wellness Alyssa Mancao adds that looking at clutter will also make you feel cluttered. Keep your surroundings clean and organize your makeup and skincare. Take out everything that's expired and while it may be painful to see, chuck them in the bin. You may also want to consider transitioning to clean beauty and avoid toxic ingredients in your skincare and makeup products.
Also read: Common Toxic Skincare Ingredients to Avoid
Self-care also includes exercising regularly. Join online classes and sweat the stress out. As Reese Witherspoon's Legally Blonde character Elle Woods has said, exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you happy.
Aim to sleep better.
While many of us spent more of not most of our time at home last year, Women's Health reports that one-third of the population were still deprived of sleep. Neuroscientist Dr. Claudia Aguirre shares the following hacks:
Sleep progression can be influenced by quick body temperature changes. Go for a nightly warm bath, then sleep in a cold bedroom. Set the room temperature to the high 60s. If you don't have time for it, indulge in a hot foot soak and aim for as much as 98 degrees.
Aguirre uses lavender or rose spray on her sheets. If you do this every night, the scent will, over time, prompt the mind that it's time to settle down and rest. The Oprah Magazine also suggests bergamot, mandarin, sandalwood and neroli essential oils for a blissful sleep.
Try a little yoga.
Stretching your chest supplies you with more oxygen. On your bed, just lie on your back and do the bridge pose by lifting your butt slightly as you take deep breaths. Then end with a savasana by just relaxing on your back with your arms and legs loose and lax.
Last year was tough on everyone, especially for frontliners. Seeking help to process thoughts and feelings should be as normal as going to a physician or dentist. There are breakthrough therapy apps that have helped a lot of people with their struggles during this pandemic. Women' Health writes that the Talkspace Online Therapy app experienced a 65 percent increase during the first month of the lockdown. The BetterHelp Online Counseling app connects you to a mental health expert once you take their quiz, and the Supportiv: The Peer Support Network app works in small groups with a moderator based on whatever the app user is struggling with at that moment.
Related article: Health Experts Agree: Self-Care Should Remain a Priority; Here are Helpful Tips to Stay Healthy in 2021