I love lists.

It’s probably the Type-A in me, but I like to establish, document and reference things. I think it improves communication – even communication to myself.

Recovery is different for everyone, but this is what has been consistently helpful for me when I consistently do these five things:

I Drink A Lot of Water – good for mood, good for skin, good for cells and wrinkles and hydration and summer and winter. I squeeze in a lemon or a lime if I get bored with tap water. Current goal is 80 oz. per day, but I often exceed that.

I Have a Bedtime Routine – funny as that may sound for an adult, the consistency of a routine at the end of my day is really helpful. It involves putting away my tech, setting things to “Do Not Disturb” and transitioning from my busy day to relaxed sleep.

I Drink Tea Every Morning – I find Earl Grey with lavender and a splash of half and half really comforting. It’s my equivalent of staying in bed longer but without staying in bed longer. I drink hot tea while I check on my garden, read emails, catch up on social media and prepare for the day. Starting my day off with something I really enjoy has made me less annoyed by morning’s arrival.

I Track My Heart Rate – I got a Fitbit to track my heart rate and my sleep, but the heart rate monitor has probably proved the most helpful and/or useful to me. It lets me know what my average heart rate was while I slept, and I am able to gauge the level of anxiety I am experiencing by where my resting heart rate is. If it’s above where I want it to be I can start making adjustments to improve it, such as drinking more water, exercising more, yoga postures before bed and taking time to pause during the day.

I Connect to Friends – Unlike George Strait, I am not here for a good time, and my friendships are more and more reflecting that. I pursue friendships with people who support me, meet me where I am and who show up, and who expect the same from me. Connecting to these friends has been a better coping mechanism than some of my past coping mechanisms!

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