The smells, the beauty, the blooming flowers and trees. All are in abundance right now and the Wellness Committee along with Kettering Medical Health Network want you to take notice of these wondrous things.
During this time of year, nature is filled with examples of abundance. Magnolia trees whose blooms are so close together that you are enveloped in a canopy of blooms when you stand by one. Red bud trees that provide gentle blooms that add subtle yet powerful color. Daffodils that turn a hillside into a sprawling canvas of shades of yellow. Rain storms that bring buckets of rain. Squirrels, woodpeckers, birds and worms. The radiant light of the sun that sets later each day. The fragrance of a spring breeze that surrounds you, your family and your home. Pause and notice the abundance of goodness surrounding us every day.
Noticing abundance does not cost anything yet it can fill us with renewed peace and hope that overflows in us to others anytime, even during challenging times.
As Ohio prepares to take steps to slowly open up, I know people are experiencing anxiety about the process and what will happen. The Oakwood Schools Wellness Committee along with Kettering Health Network are providing you with information on breathing and how you can calm your anxiety through this process.
What is one way to help reduce a stressful situation? Breathe.
Sounds so simple. Does it really work? Though it may not remove stress, breathing can help you control your reaction, bring awareness to help you respond in a meaningful way and change how you experience the experience. Breathing helps.
During a stressful situation, breathing becomes more shallow and shorter. Other muscles in your body may also tighten. Use your breath to help relax the tension. Also, focusing on breathing can help give you a few seconds before you react or respond. Your words and tone will come from a more centered place.
Take a moment to take a deep breath. Inhale through your nose and guide the air down into your belly not your chest and then exhale by contracting your stomach and breathing out through your mouth.
For the next 10 -20 seconds, continue focusing on your breath. Don’t rush through the inhale or the exhale. You have enough time.
Allow your breath to calm you and bring you into the present moment. As the air you breathe in refreshes your body and mind, the air you exhale supports the environment around you. It flows both ways to enrich your life and the health of your body and mind.
The Oakwood Schools Wellness Committee
Keeping our immune system healthy is more important than ever. The nurses are providing some information from the Ohio Department of Health to help you keep yours healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic:
1. Eat less foods that are inflammatory or damaging to the immune fighting cells (processed foods, processed sugars, and animal protein)
2. Eat more foods that are rich in vitamins and phytonutrients (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans and tea)
3. Get appropriate sleep
4. Implement stress coping and reduction techniques in to the day
The Oakwood Wellness Committee is providing you a "30 minute a day Self Care Challenge" for the month of April. You can participate in the challenge by yourself or with family and friends, always maintaining appropriate social distancing.
So what does 30 minutes of self care look like:
hiking, walking, jogging, riding a bike, yoga, walking your dog, gardening, etc. There are workout and yoga videos on YouTube, workout plans on MyFitnessPal and other apps as well.
Sharing your thoughts, ideas and concerns can relieve stress. If writing is a way you relax, check out some of the journaling prompts to get started.
Visualization and guided imagery techniques offer another avenue for stress reduction. These techniques involve creating a detailed mental image of an attractive and peaceful setting or environment. To get more information, you can visit MentalHealth.net.
Sewing, Cooking, Cleaning, etc.
Sometimes chores can reduce stress through exercise, using creativity and being able to see something happen from start to finish. Looking to pick up a new skill? Check out YouTube or Pinterest for ideas.
Virtual Brown Bag Lunches
Using Zoom, Google Meet or any of the other video meeting apps get your friends together for "lunch." You don't have to have an agenda for this meeting, just take some time to visit and connect.
There are many different ways to take care of yourself, and during this time it is so important we do this!
Use a calendar (example below) to log your activities this month!