Is someone excited? Is a big event being anticipated? Back when I used to teach in person and get to travel, haha, I’d experience any or all of these before a trip.
Traveling the Lane of After-Effects
I know people experiencing these same “symptoms” after a bout with Covid. I use emojis and comments to let others know I hear them. However, what if I could do more? What if the strategies I know and use could support others as they journey through Covid?
Someone close to me noticed numb tingling sensations in his hands and arms. Was it Covid, aging into one’s 50s, repetitive use, or something else? I scoured my favorite social media outlets seeking others with similar experiences. One day on a friend’s post, a stranger mentioned tingling feet. Knowing about someone else didn’t solve the problem but it did lessen feelings of isolation and “woe is me or woe are we”.
In my small circle, we had figured out that if I rubbed his hands and wrists in a particular way, he experienced immediate relief. What if this little activity could help others?
Rings and Bracelets, which is a Vision Gym activity, is just what it says… imagine putting a ring on each finger. Twist and turn. When the finger meets the hand, pull and push softly. Continue with pretend bangle bracelets working each wrist and forearm. For feet, do each toe. “This little piggie went to market….” And then continue with the feet and ankles.
Anxiety and Sleeplessness
Others are quietly sharing their newfound post-Covid struggles with anxiety. To me, anxiety screams nervous system. Of course, since taste and smell are often affected, we know that this bug burrows into the nervous system.
Anxiety’s buddy is sleeplessness. Drugs, such as steroids, and/or hormone disruption, e.g. from female cycling, can exacerbate sleep challenges.
How can we reset the nervous system? One of my esteemed colleagues and mentors suggested trauma work. After all, having a “new” disease pass through can be traumatic on our systems—nervous, respiratory, muscular, digestive, circulatory, endocrine, lymphatic, etc… And it goes without saying that 2020 presented many traumatic opportunities from disruption of our regular schedules, layoffs, death, social distancing, and so much more. (I’m not a negative Nellie; there were many positives resulting from the same list. This article is about pushing “reset.”)
What about my friends far away who cannot come in for a trauma session? Let’s KISS—keep it simple, sweetie! Here are some strategies that many find “simple but profound”!
And know you can always contact me for a 1:1 Zoom to get individualized attention.
- Box breathing (in for count of 4-5, hold for 4-5, out for 4-5, hold out for 4-5) is one strategy. Lots of google hits about the Navy Seals using this!
- Deep breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth is a similar strategy.
- Google “breathing Vagus nerve” to find youTube links and articles.
- Posture positioning: Stand, sit or lie down. Cross ankles. Place hands in front of you, thumbs down palms to outside, cross hands making an X, clasp hands, draw them down and up so they rest on the chest. Alternately, simply cross ankles and cross arms (resting hands in armpits). Breathe deeply and allow your muscles to unwind. (This position helps me fall asleep.) This is called Hook-ups from the Brain Gym® program; it brings the limbs to the vertical midline, similar to swaddling infants as a calming technique.
- Grounding in nature: Look for critters outside. Listen to animal sounds (Yesterday I saw a mouse scurrying from house to boiler. And I listened to the crackling as I tended the bonfire). Feel the air on your cheeks; no masks required! Breathe.
- Moving: (Disclaimer: I am terrible at moving in the winter. Sometimes I think I was meant to be a hibernating mammal or a beach babe down south. Haha! But yesterday I covered myself head to toe and actually enjoyed time spent outside in Minnesota winter.) Moving doesn’t just move muscles; it moves lymph, which is super important for flushing the system. If Covid has left you like a kinked water hose or a stagnant pond, set small goals for moving.
- Sit while pointing and flexing the feet for one minute.
- Walk up and down stairs or to the mailbox for a 2-for-1 (See #3).
- Google “best way to get lymph system moving”.
Whichever strategy you choose:
- Surround yourself in positive self-talk. “I am a strong human.” “I am capable of a full recovery.” “Side effects are temporary.” “I am resetting/restoring/restarting.”
- Set benchmarks to celebrate small change. For example, before massaging those tingling limbs, pick a number on a scale of 1-5 for how much discomfort/pain you are experiencing. After Rings/Bracelets, notice if the number has decreased/improved.
Traveling into 2021
Thank you for letting me a share a small snippet of what I know. If it helps you, yada-daba-doo, high 5! If it doesn’t, no harm done. I’m jumping into 2021 with two feet! I am teaching
- 3 courses at the homeschool cooperative (Career Explorations, Equine Science, and Trim Healthy You)
- 2 at UWRF (Alternative Methods of Early Childhood and Art/Music/Movement for the Montessori Preschool)
- 7 through my own company, In-Motion Intelligence.
AND I am also scheduling workshops and private sessions, virtually or in-person. Feel free to snoop around the website and/or reach out to me.
© 2021 Cindy Goldade, In-Motion Intelligence