7 Small Changes To Try This Week

Small change, big difference.

Posted on March 25, 2017, 10:01 GMT

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1. If you have 3 minutes: Make your
Instagram account a soothing space.

Ailbhe Malone/BuzzFeed

You may have noticed the “save” function on Instagram –
if you’re like me, you have accidentally saved some odd
photos, due to fat thumbs and pocket-fumbles. But I’ve
been using “save” to hang onto my absolute favourite dog
pictures, meaning that if I’m feeling blue, there are
many boops and woofs waiting for me, only a second away.

2. If you have 5 minutes: Try power

Zachary Gibson/ BuzzFeed

I fully accept that power posing sounds like nonsense,
and if you’re feeling rubbish, it’s not going to change
your life. But if you need a little boost, why not give
it a try?

writes: “Want to instantly improve your confidence?
Give power posing a try. The first power pose is standing
with your hands on your hips, with your chin tilted
slightly up and with your chest out. The second power
pose is to stand with your arms in a V above your head
(like you just won a race or something), with your chest
out and chin up. Do it before a big meeting or interview,
or simply start your day with a pose or two.”

3. If you have 10 minutes: Lose
yourself in your work.

Loryn Brantz/ BuzzFeed

This article in the New York Times makes a
fantastic point that a) not everyone has the luxury of
being able to take long baths in the name of self-care
(if that works for you, go for it!) b) and some anxious
brains find succour in business, rather than rest.

“Chilling out just doesn’t work for me the way work does.
I’ve never found a relaxation technique that relaxed me.
I like yoga, but when it’s time to lie still in corpse
pose my brain always starts to spin. Give me too many
empty hours and I’ll see, if not women in the wallpaper,
then danger around every corner — bankruptcy in my
computer and death in the fridge.

Far better for me to put my mind to use. The psychologist
Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi coined the term “flow” for the
state of “being completely involved in an activity for
its own sake.” In a state of flow, he says, “the ego
falls away.” This is the best description I’ve come
across for the feeling I have when I’m immersed in
writing or reporting. I remember finishing a daylong
project in Iowa City last year, ahead of the Iowa caucus,
and realizing that all the worries that had entered the
city with me had been pushed aside by the voices of the
people I talked to, by the process of fitting them all
together. To work, for me, is to care for the self by
putting the self aside.”

Follow the author, Anna North, on twitter.

4. If you have 15 minutes: Record and
banish your circling thoughts.


This tip comes via Andrea on Twitter. Whether you
revisit the recording afterwards is up to you.

5. If you have 20 minutes: Make a
wellness action plan.

Haejin Park/ BuzzFeed

Mental health charity Mind advocate creating a Wellness Action Plan. Essentially
it’s a cheatsheet for any mental illness you may have –
what being well looks like for you, any warning signs
that you may not be well, and any actions that may help
you feel better. For example: “When my anxiety is
minimal, I’m chatty and happy to make plans. When I’m
have a dip in my mental health, I’ll be withdrawn,
snappy, and cancel a lot. I need space, and you should
encourage me to rest.”

Mind encourage you to share this plan with your line
manager at work, but if you don’t feel comfortable doing
that, you could share it with your partner, housemates or

6. If you have 30 minutes: Read
Open: A Toolkit for How Magic and Messed Up Life Can
by Gemma Cairney

Pan Macmillan

Chelsey writes:
“This lovely new book from Gemma Cairney is a must read
for anyone trying to get their life together and cut
themselves a break at the same time. Gemma’s book
provides bits of wisdom on everything from breakups to
work troubles to body image, and keeps a really
encouraging and creative approach throughout. Get it


“For something shorter, read this
lovely essay by YA author Alwyn Hamilton about how
nerding out online helped her gain confidence as a
reader, writer, and friend.”

This is a weekly
series! Got a self-care tip you’d like to suggest? Let me
know in the comments or
tweet me.

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