5 ways to rest

I’ve been in my house on Covid lockdown for two weeks. First Anna tested positive and then after a few days of looking after them, and sleeping in separate rooms, I started to feel like I had cold symptoms. I tested negative with a RAT two days before the third one came in positive.

It’s the first time I’ve been sick with a cold/flu since early 2020, but most of my tips and tricks for caring for a cold had been revisited already for looking after Anna. Anna’s covid case was thankfully relatively mild, mine wasn’t so much. It moved into my chest after two days and breathing started to be pretty difficult. Thankfully I had proactive advice from my doctor’s office and had a turbuhaler prescribed, which Anna was well enough to go and collect for me. This is all context for the meat of this post, which is that I have had an entire week of careful rest, so as to get better and to avoid Long Covid if I can.

A lot of my friends have expressed a difficulty with giving themselves time to rest, and then when they do have time, not knowing how to approach it. I get it, there’s always other things we could be doing. Chores, side-hustles, catching up on the ever-present to do list and so on. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t rest. So, here’s some of the things I do which allow my body and my mind to let go of all the ‘should’s and just rest.

  1. Sit and read. Best on a comfy chair with a soft, warm blanket and a cup of something hot – tea, coffee, hot chocolate, whatever you prefer, and a nice snack. If it feels too hard to give yourself the time to read, you can timebox it – just 30 minutes. You can spare that much, and if at the end of the 30 mins you want to keep reading, do it.
  2. Video games. I bought Mario Kart as soon as Anna tested positive, basically. We both have Nintendo Switches and this has been a great game for us to learn and play together, trying out the different characters and vehicles and just having a little fun. It engages the mind but it’s not taxing, and your body is resting. Plus, laughter is healing!
  3. Comfort watching. Now this could be old movies that you’ve loved in the past (I hit up Moulin Rouge and Titanic lately), it could be a beloved show that you’ve seen a thousand times before or it could be aesthetically pleasing Youtubers. Anna and I have watched an awful lot of Study for Success this week – it’s so beautiful to look at, and who doesn’t love to gaze at stationery?

5. Go take a nap. Here’s my trick with napping. I don’t stress about actually sleeping. I get comfortable, I make sure I’m warm in bed, and I put on something soothing to listen to. Maybe it’s my favourite acoustic album (Alt-J an Awesome Wave), or maybe it’s a podcast that I’ve heard before (Welcome to Night Vale, or Overdue are good options for me, personally). Then I close my eyes and just listen, and if I drift off well, that’s great, but if not, I’ve given my body some downtime.

That’s just 5 of the things I do to ensure I’m getting rest, and this last week I’ve been doing them all a lot. I hope it helped!

What do you do to rest?