We like to watch out for each other at Vern HQ and that often includes oversharing about our own lives and offering unsolicited advice. And, somehow, it seems to be working. We’re by no means experts on self-care, but we do know that everyone appreciates learning new tricks to get through dreary winter days or help you pull yourself out from under the covers in the morning. To mark #BellLetsTalk Day, we had Vern staffers share their’ personal self-care practices with the hopes that you might find a new tool to help you navigate this crazy world.
Big Cups of Pour Over Coffee
When I need to take it down a notch and just focus on myself, I take time to make a pour-over coffee. There’s something about the slowness of the ritual and then the pleasure I feel when drinking that makes me feel a bit more grounded and centred. Every little bit helps! –Ricky
Talking with Friends and Family
When I’m feeling down it’s usually because I’m distancing myself from others, so a single call to my grandma can change my entire perspective on life. If you’re unable to talk with your family, therapy is a great option. I highly recommend monthly therapy sessions. They allow me to reset and give me something to look forward to every month! –Lexi
Soaking in the Tub
I treat myself to a long, hot bath every weekend, and sometimes mid-week! I pour myself a cup of tea and a glass of water, dim the lights, drop in a fun bath bomb, turn on some music, and just enjoy some calming time to myself. Whether it’s how I’m starting my Saturday morning or ending my Sunday evening, I’m always ten times more relaxed after a bath. –Ayla
Phone-Free Walks with my Dog
We walk our pup twice a day for 30-minutes to an hour and I always try to leave my phone at home and take part in at least one of the walks every day. It allows me to be present and enjoy some fresh air without any distractions. Usually, no one else is around so it’s the perfect moment of quiet solitude! –Caitie
When I get too caught up in my head, I know that I need to move my body. Whether it’s a lunchtime barre class, candle-lit yoga practice or intense boxing workout, I always feel refreshed and re-energized after. That endorphin rush is real! –Vanessa
When that impending gloom and doom feeling takes reign in my brain, I take Tay Tay’s advice and “shake it off.” Whether it’s blasting a record in my living room and dancing like a maniac, or getting a group of friends together to hit up the dance floor, getting lost in lyrics and beats helps reset my thoughts, sweat through the slump, and reconnect with myself. –Janis
Lock It Down
Apple gave me a big dose of reality when it added Screen Time tracking to its settings. I already knew I was spending too much time staring at screens but seeing actual numbers really hit it home for me. To help me disconnect from the Internet and connect with the world around me, I relinquish access to non-essential apps — I can still text and talk — between 5:40 p.m. and 7 a.m. You can set up your own Screen Time schedule in the settings of your phone. For Android users, look for Digital Wellbeing. –Fraser
Head for the Hills
Whenever I need a little dose of me-time, I point the car West, crank up the tunes (with music no one else can tell me to turn off), and head for the mountains for a morning or afternoon drive. There’s something so peaceful and freeing about having no set destination and just open skies and fresh mountain air to explore. I’ll often turn down sideroads I haven’t been down, park the car somewhere beautiful and sit on the hood and take it all in. The mountains have a special way of slowing down time, easing anxiety and reminding us that it’s a good life. –Sarah
Curling Up with a Good Book
Reading about someone else’s life helps me get out of my own for a bit. It’s a good way to escape, which is important when life gets overwhelming! –Twyla
I love taking my dog out and going for a run (or cross-country ski in the winter). When I’m feeling stressed, I know I need to go outside and get my heart rate up to reset my mind. Cardio helps me focus on my breath — It’s kind of meditative for me. Exercising outside also allows me to get the fresh air that I need. –Ruth
When I’m feeling down, I like to buy myself a nice bouquet of flowers or a new plant to add life and beauty to my house. It’s a quick way to add some fresh scents and a pop of color to your home when life seems stinky and grey! –Ruth
Lo-fi Music, Essential Oils and my iPad
When I need to relax, I find a place where I feel the most comfortable (it’s usually my bed), turn on my diffuser, add some drops of essential oil, and just draw on my iPad with some lo-fi, chill, playlist in the background. If my mind is too distracted to draw, I just write down a list of things that are in my head and lay everything out. Knowing what’s in my head helps me feel more in control of the situation! –Sumin
Watching Cats and Dogs
I like to start my weekend by watching cats and dogs (or any other animals/sometimes national geographics lol) on YouTube. I don’t have any pets, and starting a day with animals always makes me feel more relaxed & happy! –Hyo
If you feel like you need help but aren’t sure where to turn to, consulting with a medical professional is a great place to start. You can also refer to the amazing resources compiled by Bell Let’s Talk. If you are in crisis, please go to your local hospital, call 911 immediately or locate a Crisis Centre in your region.
For kids and teens: Kids Help Phone
For adults: Canadian Mental Health Association
For seniors: Canadian Coalition for Seniors’ Mental Health
Multilingual resources: Multicultural Mental Health Resource Centre
For additional resources, visit Bell Let’s Talk.
Are you a glutton for unsolicited advice and also an insomniac? We’ve got the perfect Vern article for you. Check out Kait Kucy’s review of boxed mattresses and see which one won a place in her bedroom.