Activism burnout is real. Most of us are fighting for change in terms of racial, gender, and general equality for minorities on top of completing school, going into work, living with family, and, of course, managing a worldwide pandemic. Unless you work for a nonprofit dedicated to these causes, chances are you’re doing this work for free.
It’s emotionally taxing to have to advocate for what should be basic rights in our world. You have every right to be frustrated, upset, and just plain tired. So if you’re finding yourself needing to take a break, here are 10 things to do to decompress and take care of yourself.
- Unplug for a bit
Online news, social media, and the internet can be a super depressing place right now, especially when you read about all the hatred and crimes committed against the world. We can’t ignore it, but we can’t keep ingesting it 24/7. It’s important to take some time offline and away from all the noise. Information overload is real and we can only take in so much before we need a break.
- Listen to uplifting podcasts
I recently got into podcasts this year, and it’s decisions that I’ve made! There are so many podcasts out there spreading positivity, especially for Black and POC folks struggling right now. The best part is you can listen to them for motivation while you’re working at home, doing laundry, or cooking in the kitchen.
- Watch some feel-good movies and TV shows
Films and television have always been great ways to escape from reality. Since the pandemic struck, more people find themselves tuning in to online streaming services to fill in lost time from everyday outings and to distract themselves from the negativity of the world. Find a silly sitcom or a sappy romantic film that makes you feel good.
- Start a new project
It could be something as simple as redecorating your bedroom to learning how to sew. Find a project you’ve been wanting to work on or finish one you started months ago. Not only is this a fun way to destress, but it’s also extremely rewarding to make something yourself.
- Take a walk outside
Since I’ve been on lockdown, I’ve been going outside a lot more. If possible, try taking a walk in the morning every day, or even just once a week. It’s nice to get in some fresh air and have a change of scenery from your house.
- Make your favorite dish
I started cooking more this year, and while I wouldn’t call myself a chef, I certainly enjoy cooking from time to time. Find some cool new recipes on Pinterest, your favorite food website, or from your parents’ old cookbooks. Cooking is a great skill to have , and there’s not much more exciting than diving into your favorite dish.
- Play a board game, cards, or something offline
I’m trying not to spend so much time online since I know it’s not great for you and I get bored easily. Playing board games, cards, or anything offline is a great way to stay moderate in your online activity and enjoy yourself while you’re at it. And if you have roommates or live with family, you can have them join and have some fun bonding together!
- Set up a night routine
This is great to have in general; a nightly routine can really set the tone for your sleep. We all know sleep is super important and how you need to be in the right environment to get a good night’s rest. Do something relaxing, like taking a bath, or reading..
- Talk with friends
Staying in touch with your circle is just as important now, if not more, than when the pandemic first started. Text or call your friends during your free time, schedule a video meeting, or play a game online together. It’s so important to stay in touch with your close-knit group; right now, we all need each other more than ever.
- Take a nap
No, you can’t ignore the world, but sometimes you just need a break! I’ve found that afternoon maps do wonders for my mood and energy levels. Studies have shown taking a 20 to 30-minute nap benefits your overall wellbeing. So grab a pillow, set an alarm, and give yourself the good naptime you deserve.
Remember: you can’t pour from an empty cup. This year has been stressful as hell. Take care of yourself. And, if you need additional help, reach out to loved ones and mental health resources.