Self Care Post of the Week – Sunshine

*I want to start these self care posts by saying that I’m not a professional. I’m just someone who suffers from both anxiety and depression. These are all things that I personally do that help me either physically, mentally or both. What works for me may not work for you – so take these ideas as a stepping stone to figure out what resonates with and helps you. Something I DO know is the more consistent I am in focusing on various self care things for myself, the better I feel. As I write these, they will be added to the Self Care page so they can be easily found and not jumbled in with all the blog posts.

Have you ever just sat outside in the sun and closed your eyes? Felt the warmth of the sun on your skin, sensing the light through your eyelids and just paused to take it all in? I find it so refreshing and grounding to just connect with the nature around me and really pay attention to how it makes me feel when I stop and pay attention to all my senses.

There are so many benefits to getting a little sunshine. I know when I’m feeling really low and not leaving my room and going outside, I feel a whole lot worse. By getting some sunshine every day, it helps increase the serotonin in your brain – which helps give energy, keeps me calm and lifts my mood. It also helps me sleep better because it helps with my internal clock and being awake in the day.  It’s also a great source of vitamin D which helps your bones stay strong and is great for strengthening your immune system. 

Even something as little as opening your curtains to let the sunshine in can help. I’ve had days where my depression was such that even just getting up to open the curtain felt like work. But when I did, just having that natural light stream in did wonders to help me lift up just a little from where I felt. When off work because of the pandemic, I even changed the orientation of the desk in my room so it is right in front of my window and could get some natural light when working at my desk with the curtains open. 

Of course I can’t leave off the reminder of sun protection. As wonderful as feeling the sun can be, it’s also dangerous to soak up too much of it without sunscreen. If I know I’m only going to be out around 20 minutes or less, I don’t bother with it so I can get all that vitamin D – but any longer and I’m slathering on the sunscreen. I’m one that burns so easily because I’m so pale, so it’s definitely a necessity for me to stay safe – especially if it’s mid-day when the sun is strongest. 

Do you make sure you’re getting enough sunshine in your life?

Until next time, xoxo

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