It’s as simple and complicated as that – Get out.
My best advice is to go and be in nature with friends, but that’s not always possible, so let’s start small and build up.
I don’t care what the weather is like, or how you are feeling, getting outside is good for you (unless you’re severely immuno-compromised and should be in a bubble). There is something in out bodies that responds to being outside. Natural light helps our brains to operate properly, sunlight on out skin creates essential vitamins and feeling a breeze stimulates our mind. These things are good for us. Admittedly, it’s less pleasant if it’s cold, grey and rainy – but even then it’s still good for us. Billy Connolly once famously said ‘there is no bad weather, just the wrong clothes’, so go put on some ‘right clothes’ and get out there.
Maybe out there means nothing more than stepping outside your front door. If that’s all you can manage, that’s fine, but still go and stick your head out of the door. Maybe it means getting into the garden and tidying a few things up – pull up the odd dead plant or weed, encourage and nurture the ones you like, feed the birds or squirrels…whatever you fancy.
Maybe getting out can be more of a journey – a walk to the shop or the park. A little exercise can do wonders for your body and mind. Firstly you get the physical benefits, but then you get the mental ones too – the feeling of having achieved something.
Maybe it could be an adventure – now we’re really cooking! Is there somewhere within walking distance from your house that you’ve never been to? Who knows where this could lead. Maybe you find a new church or social club that you could be involved with, maybe you see a notice looking for volunteers, maybe a poster for a gig you want to see.
Then what if we venture out a little further…could we go somewhere we’ve never been and explore it by walking around it? Could we invite friends or family and turn it into a trip? Could there be food and drink? What about music or games? Maybe there are tents, yurts, tee pee’s or caravans… What have we started here???
Self care is about feeling and being the best version of yourself. If it helps you to be alone, to recharge by being in your own space, go out on your own. If you yearn to be around others, ask them to join you. If there is no-one in your life to join you, but you would like there to be, make that a priority whilst you are out and about. Look for opportunities to get involved in groups by volunteering or joining social events. Look for walking or running groups and take the plunge to join in. 20 seconds on bravery could change your life.
So put the screen away, grab a comfy pair of shoes and Get Out!
Social anxiety and agoraphobia can lead people to become stuck in their own homes. This is a tragic shame for anyone suffering from it and it’s unnecessary. There are ways you can be free to enjoy your life again. As a hypnotherapist I love helping people to get their life back, so don’t just suffer, make a change to make your life the best it can be.