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Why It's Important To Get Dressed In The Morning.

If it wasn't for my contraceptive pill I wouldn't know what day it is. In fact, I still shout downstairs to double-check that I haven't missed any. Today is Thursday I say to myself. It's remarkable how reliant we are on routine. We've been told since birth when to wake up, when to eat, where to go. And for the first time in my life, I have no reason to go anywhere, or do anything. I am completely at my own mercy. 

That being said, there are plenty of people who spend the majority of their time at home. It's not uncommon for mothers to stay with their children until they go to school and a lot of small businesses are being run from someone's kitchen. But for those new to the concept, it's been somewhat of a struggle.

As the Government announced Lockdown, I ordered a selection of cute and colourful t-shirts. I thought that the classic tee and jeans combo would be fun, I was optimistic. Four days later I was in pyjamas. I fell into the spiral of what's the point? Trips to the supermarket are at a minimum, I ran out of paint and my daily run quickly slipped into a when I can be bothered run.

It's easy to find yourself dwindling. My job is me, being on my feet for nine and a half hours and continuously speaking to people, most likely in a dress and heels, solving problems and being my sing-songy self. But naturally, I'm a lazy person, I can admit that. I give up too easily, and I'm really good at lying to myself. Without that structure, I felt myself slipping. But for my own mental sanity, I have made the commitment to get dressed in the morning.

It doesn't sound like a lot, but it's a simple step towards optimism of whatever the day has in store for you.

Getting dressed changes your mindset, the shift from one to another switches your mind on. You're ready and prepared for whatever the day throws at you. Studies show that we are more productive in the mornings because of this get up and go mentality. And choosing what to wear will provide you with your first set of options for the day. If it's sunny outside why not seize the opportunity and go for a walk? Any home DIY jobs on the go? Grab those old jeans. Are you feeling a bit down in the dumps? Pick something in your favourite colour, It'll lift your spirits! 

Even if our day doesn't have the structure we're used to, it's up to us to try and maintain as much as we can. Routines help us to navigate the day, as you do the same thing over and over again it creates the structure that our bodies get used to. They drastically reduce the amount of psychological friction between us and our goals. Ever stayed up all night and felt out of sorts the next day? It's a similar kind of interruption.

Faced with these sudden changes in lifestyle it's easy to spend our days migrating from the bed to the sofa. Engulfed in video games or scrolling through social media, relying on a diet of hobnobs and cups of tea. The room darkens, time passes and the next thing you know you're questioning where your day's gone. Don't get me wrong, sometimes we need downtime, it's a chance to reset. But eventually we've to pick ourselves up, and carry on.

I'm not going to commit to yoga videos in the morning, running a 5k before dinner, putting on makeup or even redecorating the house. Because falling short of self-made commitments is the last thing I want to feel bad about right now. But at least I know that if I want to do any of these things, I'm ready. 

Who knows what you'll be inspired to do. I started writing again and I'm doing online tutorials with the adobe suits to refresh my skills. On the first day of the getting dressed commitment, I reorganised my dressing room and now have two bags full of things to donate to goodwill, once charities reopen their stores.

It starts with one small thing. We just have to stay optimistic. 

Have you been faced with a mental wall since the lockdown? How are you keeping yourself motivated? Let me know!

Gem x

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