How is your heart today?
Are you feeling heavy or light? Restless or peaceful? Anxious or calm?
What’s on your heart today?
Where your next paycheck is coming from? The health of your children? The health of your essential worker spouse, family, or friends?
I’m not a mental health expert, but if someone were to ask me, I’d tell them they should be doing a Heart Check at least once a day, twice if you’re feeling ambitious, and more if you need it.
Why a Heart Check?
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I just get swept up in my day. I make to-do lists (sometimes to my detriment, as I discussed in my last post). I try to maximize my productivity while allowing myself to be pulled in twenty different directions. There never seems to be enough time in the day for everything that “needs” to get done. And frankly ya’ll, I suck at making myself a priority.
Sometimes I just have to stop and check-in.
What sensations am I feeling in my body?
What is the most important, or the essential thing, right now?
Am I trying to do too much?
What small, immediate action can I take to alleviate what’s weighing on my heart right now?
Our world has been turned on its head with COVID19. Some of us are essential workers, people who work from home, or the lucky few who get paid even while we’re on an “extended vacation.” You may be in the extended vacation camp, grateful for the time off, and just irked by the toilet paper shortage. (Seriously, is the toilet-paper shortage going on everywhere or just in my town?) You may be someone thanking whoever or whatever you believe in that our government is depositing money in your bank account because you had no idea how you were going to pay your rent or mortgage this month. You may be in quarantine and feeling worn down from being in such close quarters with your spouse and children for so long. Or maybe you live alone, don’t have too many people to talk to, and are starting to feel the weight of your own world pressing down on your shoulders.
Whatever camp you’re in, make sure you’re taking time throughout the day to check in with yourself, and don’t be afraid to talk to someone if you need to.
I think there’s one thing that we all need to remember during this:
There are always people who are worse off than you.
There are always people who are better off than you.
No matter what your situation is, good or bad, what you’re feeling and experiencing is valid.
I’m going to leave you with two things today.
First: here are three things I’m grateful for today. I encourage you to think of three things that you’re grateful for today, and if you want, leave your list as a comment on this post.
- My fiance, and all of the love and support he provides me every day. The enthusiasm he has for sharing that love and help with our daughter. (We get to meet her in July.)
- The fact that myself, my fiance, and our daughter are all healthy.
- Online shopping. Seriously, it’s been like Christmas every day at our home for about two weeks now.
Second: if you’re struggling right now, or feeling alone, here are some resources that I want you to have.
To Write Love On Her Arms
To Write Love On Her Arms has been an official non-profit since 2007 (according to their website). I love TWLOHA because it’s truly a community. They have life-saving resources listed on their website, and they provide treatment and recovery scholarships that are funded through fundraisers and merchandise sales. They also have a blog and communities you can join, such as TWLOHA Blue, all of which are designed to bring people together, help individuals receive the help they need, and destigmatize the conversation around mental health. I recommend To Write Love On Her Arms because I have been active with them for over ten years, and they have been a beacon of hope for me since their MySpace beginnings and my volatile teenage years.
National Alliance on Mental Illness
Another great resource. NAMI has been around for a long time (check the logo), and they have it all. According to their website, “NAMI provides advocacy, education, support, and public awareness so that all individuals and families affected by mental illness can build better lives.” They also have physical locations across the country, and of course, they have a list of phone numbers you can call if you need immediate help. This a very reputable organization, so I feel entirely comfortable recommending it to my readers.
From the website: “Our primary mission is to create the only database of all hotlines, helplines, text chat and web chat services from scratch. We have chosen this mission because no such database exists.” If you’re in crisis mode, this is another excellent resource for finding the help you need right now. They boast over 20,000 services (“as of March 1st, 2020”). If you want to know more before you use their website, they have a great about page that explains why they exist, what they do, how they do it, and more.
Stay safe. Stay healthy. And make sure you do a Heart Check today.
I love you all.
*None of the links in this post are affiliate links. I don’t make money from sharing them. I genuinely just want to put some resources out there for those who may need it.
*The logos that are used in this post are copyright their respective organizations. I pulled them from either a google search or directly from their websites in the interest of providing a visual reference. The links take you directly to the homepages of each respective website.