How to be good to your body when you’re feeling sick
Self-Care

How to be good to your body when you’re feeling sick

Sick is my absolute least favorite 4-letter word. (I’m betting you can guess what my favorite one is.) I’ll pretty much do anything in my power to avoid being sick. On the rare occasion when I feel myself coming down with something, I basically ignore it and pretend like everything’s fine.

Because let’s be honest, I have a toddler. I don’t really get the chance to be sick or take the day off anyway.

But there are times — once or twice a year — when I am full on sick as a dog and cannot drag my ass out of bed. Those are the times when I try to follow (as best I can) the following five pieces of advice.

How to be good to your body when you're feeling sick.

  1. Get as much sleep as humanly possible. I feel like this goes without saying, since it’s probably all you’re going to want to do anyway. The key here is to get as much undisturbed sleep as you can. Preferably in one stretch. Naps and early bedtimes are encouraged. Nay, mandatory.
  2. Stay hydrated. Nothing spells trouble quite like dehydration when you’re sick. Dehydrations also spells things like headaches, fatigue, and lowered immunity. Not exactly the look you’re going for when you’re already sick. So make sure to drink lots of fluids (bonus points for clear fluids like water, tea, and broth) so that you can flush all of those unwanted germs and toxins out of your system.
  3. Drink hot liquids. Not only do warm beverages keep you hydrated, they take it a step further and aid in digestion, promote relaxation, and help to stimulate your immune system to flush out what doesn’t belong. I know that some people swear by teas or immune-boosting syrups, but any hot liquid is going to do the job here. Bonus: it can help to sooth a sore throat and warm your body if you’ve got the chills.
  4. Move your body, GENTLY. This is not recommendation to get on the elliptical and sweat your ass off. Instead, it’s a reminder that gently moving your body will help keep things from getting stagnant or stuck (hello mucous, body aches, and brain fog). Plus, any yoga routine that calls for a blanket and pillow is a winner in my book.
  5. Honor the ebbs and flows of your energy. Do not, I repeat DO NOT try and force yourself to be productive or especially brilliant while your sick. (Been there, done that. It most definitely does not work.) Instead, honor where you are with your energy. When you’re tired, rest. When you feel a burst of energy, follow it! In fact, this advice goes for pretty much every single day of your life. Ya dig?

Your turn!

What’s your favorite way to take care of yourself and honor your body when it’s feeling a bit under the weather?

Emily Levenson is a therapist turned holistic health coach, podcaster, meditation encourager, and seeker of everyday magic. Emily recently kicked off her third #The100DayProject, focusing her efforts on daily meditation.

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