Ten Tips Toward a Healthy Spirit, Mind, and Body Amidst COVID19 and other 2020 Crises

I’m not sure when or where the three elements that make us human were ordered as mind, body, and soul. But I disagree that our minds should come first as far as care.

For me, it’s when my soul is in a healthy, thriving place and space that I can thrive in the areas of my mental and physical health.

As of late, it’s my spirit that grieves. The day before Easter, I posted these words via my Instagram page:


  • These past few weeks have been hard on me. Even though I’m primarily home anyway, watching the fabric of our society change rapidly has been unsettling. So much is uncertain. And despite being certain of my resurrected Savior, I have a confession. I’m grieving.
  • I’m grieving for friends and family who’ve been sick and quarantined.
  • I’m grieving for my mom, who has worked super hard to create a beautiful backyard space in anticipation of all of us gathering there for Easter this year. Now thanks to COVID-19, that gathering will have to wait one more year.
  • I’m grieving for myself and fellow Christian writers who weren’t able to gather for the annual conference at Mt Hermon. I haven’t been able to go for three years and was finally set and paid, with a complete manuscript ready to go.
  • Although I’m grateful we’ve had some warm weather in Idaho this week, and I’ve begun getting garden spaces ready in my yard, a trip to the home improvement caused me grief yet again as I watched several customers donning medical masks and shopping alone.
  • Yesterday was a tough day for me. I felt fatigued, worn, and by the time I went to bed I felt as if I’d been crying all day even though I hadn’t. I felt guilty for not feeling more grateful, then it occurred to me…
  • Didn’t Jesus die for me for this purpose? For these moments when we as a society, as humanity, as individuals are weak, insufficient and failing? For the moments we are most vulnerable and least able to be strong?

My Top 10 Back and Forth Series Seems Untimely

At the beginning of 2020, I’d recounted the journey of health struggles and triumphs in my family over the past decade. The post ended with 10 ways I use to stay healthy in spirit, mind, and body.

The following is my “COVID19 Vulnerability Revamp” of that list…

  1. Fasting – Be it specific foods or drinks, television, or stressful topics (especially with all the current events and hot topics of the year), I’ve found even removing these things for a few days helps to lift my spirits and increases my ability to sleep well.
  2. Focus – In May, I actually gave up using a day planner for the first time in over a decade. I stopped making to-do lists and started deciding what to do with my day one day at a time. This wasn’t easy at first, but came with it the freedom of flexibility. Without a list of things looming over me, I could focus on one thing at a time and feel satisfied at the end of the day without the need to cross things off a list. I did end up getting a standard annual planner to begin in July, but nothing like the complicated ones I’d been using.
  3. Freetime – This one is an understatement since we’ve been so limited to spending time at home. But since I haven’t had my grandkids as often, I’ve spent a LOT of time outside on the days that weather permits. I’ve listened to uplifting podcasts and music as I dig, plant, water and get to know the birds that also make my property their home.
  4. Faith – I’m working through the One Year Bible. Even if I miss days, and then listen on my Bible app to catch up, God always has something to say to me through His Word. Whether it’s confirming the state of the world today, confirming that no matter what changes, He DOES NOT, or giving me words for a prayer that will soothe my soul, my Faith guides me moment by moment and gives me peace in the chaos.
  5. Family – While I grieve the many events we’ve had to cancel or postpone this year, I’ve also connected with family in different ways now that we all know we cannot take for granted our opportunities to connect. Thank you ZOOM, Marco Polo, and Snapchat :)
  6. Friends – In my original post, I had made a goal to grow more friendships in 2020 and the decade to follow. Since we have no way of knowing what the future holds (and really never do), I’m taking friendship goals one day at a time as well. Deepening my existing relationships is now more important than forming new ones.
  7. Food – Um… this one is still a daily challenge. Let’s just say I’m limited and doing my best in this area when time, energy, and money allows. ;)
  8. Fellowship – Then there’s my church family — those who have journeyed with Mike and I for the past twenty years. But we will be joining a Life Group at the end of this week. After our attempt to host our own group didn’t result in many attendees, we realized we will have a better chance of connecting with others if we attend an established group. I’m also going to attend the Mount Hermon Writers Conference this year! I missed the last two and am really looking forward to the enjoying the fellowship/friendships with other writers. Sad, but true that COVID-19 literally striked through these goals! :(
  9. Fun – This is kinda like freetime, but isn’t so isolated in my mind. I can use freetime for my alone space, my creativity and my release from stress. But having fun with others is important too. Having a game night or going ice skating or to the movies with my daughters, sons, or my husband is another thing I don’t do often enough. Again, strike that for 2020 at least! However, a few game nights, movie and TV show marathons have still marked the majority of our fun this year. I have to admit, spending time in front of the TV is more fun when we really can’t do anything else!
  10. Future Goals – With our future so uncertain, long-term goals seem futile. However, I’m still working on my stories and making my home and property an enjoyable, restful place to do life regardless of what the future holds.

What about you? How have your 2020 goals changed this year? How have you made the most of things, learned to live in the moment, or made new kinds of memories you never thought possible?


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