Self-care rituals and beauty routines are something that many of us take great pride in and take comfort in. However, for those who live with severe depression and anxiety, it can sometimes feel like a cross to bear, even the simplest personal hygiene task becomes difficult. to stay in control. It’s a fight that I face regularly, but always wanted to talk about.
I lived with depression and anxiety for eight years, and during that time various parts of my daily routine took a step back, from answering texts to taking a shower. A period of poor mental health can be triggered by something as small as a mild pain that convinces me I’m having a heart attack or that my brain is working overtime when I remember something that upsets me. Whatever the causes, my depressive or anxious episodes are almost always accompanied by a secondary order of lack of energy, appetite and inability to separate from my bed.
Over the years, I have tried a number of different approaches to managing my mental health, with antidepressants being the most effective so far. However, as useful as I find my medicine, it cannot fix everything. Last year I suffered a traumatic panic attack two weeks after the UK’s first lockdown which required an ambulance to be called. The hours, days and weeks that followed left me bedridden, dehydrated and deeply ill.
It was then that I decided to invent a new lean routine; something simple that would stay clean, calm, and supported, but that wouldn’t require me to push myself further than I could go. I have been perfecting this routine for over a year now. Some days I don’t have to rely on it, but when I do I find doing these simple yet effective movements essential in helping me get through the day.
Here, I’m sharing six self-care tips – along with some beauty product suggestions – that have helped me and, hopefully, will prove useful to others as well.