We’ve Got This.

Hey there!

If you don’t know me, I’m Alanna Martella.

If you do know me, whadddup!

Thank you for coming to my blog, I’m so delighted to have you here!

If you haven’t already, check out my YouTube channel at the link in the top right corner and hit that subscribe button! You can also find me on Instagram, twitter and Facebook — @alannamartella.

For my first official post, I was going to tell you my backstory—if you have been to my YouTube channel, you’ve probably seen my channel and noticed I mentioned that I died—and spoiler alert! Here I am! I made it!

I was going to tell you that story for the first post, but I think with everything going on in the world with the coronavirus, we should put that on the backburner and look at the bigger picture.

The coming of this COVID-19 has changed our lifestyles dramatically for the last couple of weeks. Pretty much every aspect of life has changed. We can’t go to the gym, we can’t be within six feet of other people, just a lot of changes that are underway right now and a lot of uncertainty and questions we can’t answer.

So, I wanted to give you some ideas or tips of what I’ve been doing to stay sane and calm during this time, and hopefully these can help you, as well!

First, I think it’s so important that we use this time to our advantage. Our “normal” everyday lives are so fast paced. We’re always rushing, rushing, rushing to the next thing we must do. And sometimes down time seems unproductive.

I think this is the perfect time to take that dream or vision that you’ve always wanted to make happen, but have never had the time to do it, now is the time to do it. If you’ve always wanted to write a book—get on writing. If you’ve always wanted to start a YouTube channel—wink, wink—start that now!

Use this time to your advantage. It is so rare that we get this downtime and while we have it, use it.

And if that means getting more rest or sleep or just relaxing—there’s no greater time than the present!

I noticed a week or so ago Lewis Howes made an Instagram post that discussed various startups that were founded during the last recession back between 2008 to 2010-ish. Some of those startups include AirBnb and Venmo! So, think about it. That vision you have right now could be that next big “it” startup! So now is your prime time to shine, folks!

Another tip to use during this period: Control the controllable. And one of the best ways you can do this is through breathwork. We don’t have a lot of control over many of the things in our lives, especially with now with the stay-at-home order. But one thing we always have control over is our breath. So, when that turmoil is going around, our breath will always remain constant.

If you’ve never meditated before, you’re going to feel a bit silly doing it for the first time. I would suggest downloading the Headspace app or the Insight Timer app—and no, I am NOT sponsored by either of these companies, I just legitimately have used them in the past for help and they are useful tools to help you with your meditation practice.

If you don’t want to use an app, you can throw yourself to the fire and just do it. So, get into a comfortable position, seated or laying down, and place one hand on your belly and one on your heart, close your eyes and take some breathes. I typically do counts of four—four count inhale, four count exhale—and for the first few times you do this actually counting those seconds will be helpful.

Eventually, you won’t need to count, and you will just get lost in the motions of breathing and letting go, being in the moment. Feeling the relaxation over you body. Feeling aware of how your body feels and how your emotions are responding to the practice. Let your emotions come and go and recognize that they are not permanent, they are temporary. How you feel now and respond to your meditation practice one day will look and feel a lot different than another day. Don’t chase the time you feel like you’re in the “flow”. Know that the reaction your body, mind and soul are ___ to the practice you’re experiencing now is exactly how you’re supposed to be reacting in the moment.

Meditation will help to keep you calm, centered and grounded—perfect for times in which there is a lot of uncertainty, such as now.

Another tool that helps ease anxiety and the stresses of the unknown: The use of mantras.

Example: Every day when I wake up, I say, “Great day! Great day! Today’s going to be a great day!” I say it super excitedly, out loud, at 2 a.m. so poor Chris has to deal with it every morning (God love him), but saying it out loud sets the tone for the day. It also affirms to the universe that my day is going to be great.

And you can use these with any phrase. That’s what a mantra is: A phrase that you apply to every day life and you just make it a manifestation.

Another one that I like to use is “I am worthy of the life I want.” I say it every day, throughout the day. I say it on my yoga mat and it helps to keep me calm and visualize that life that I’ve always dreamed of having. Mantras don’t have to be your life dream or vision, it can be anything that you are working toward goal and vision wise. But the key to mantras is to absolutely believe what you’re saying, feel what you’re saying, wholeheartedly, as if it has already happened.

I really think these practices will help you, they help me, and I would love to hear any feedback from you if you do try these out in your daily life! OR if you’ve been using any of these techniques, share with me how they have worked for you in your life!

Back to my backstory, again, I’ll tell you it another time, but during my medical ordeal, one of my doctors told me that in the entire puzzle of life, this is merely a piece of it. This can be applied to our situation right now with the coronavirus. In our entire lives, this is just a piece of the puzzle. So, find comfort in knowing that this too shall pass.

We’re all in this together. We can and we WILL get through this.

And of course, wash your hands.

I *had* to leave my house.

Hello there and welcome back to my blog! Aside from being here in the blog space, you can find me on YouTube, Instagram, twitter and Facebook.

So today, I want to talk about the benefits of being outdoors.

You’re probably reading this on your couch. You might be at the kitchen table. You might be sitting on the floor. But, you’re probably inside, nonetheless. And I just wanted to remind you that though we are under stay-at-home orders, we are, indeed allowed to go outdoors for some fresh air (at a good social distance from others, of course). In fact, it’s actually recommended that we get outside.

Not only is going outside something fun that you can do by yourself or your family, but while you’re outdoors, you receive many benefits.

One of the most obvious reasons to get outdoors is to exercise and the funny thing is, you don’t even realize you’re doing it! You could be hiking, you could be biking, you could be rollerblading, you could be walking down the sidewalk—whatever it is you’re doing, you wont realize you’re moving because it’s typically enjoyable and you burn those calories! You get your blood flowing for circulation, which in turn, improves your focus and you strengthen your muscles. This is so important to get that circulation and muscle movement, especially when most days during these stay-at-home orders, we are sitting on our bums.

Another reason to get outdoors? The Vitamin D! Vitamin  D helps to boost our immune system, which is so important right now with the coronavirus. The coronavirus hits those who are immunocompromised. If we have those strong immune systems, even if we do breathe in that air, we may not get hit has hard as someone with a not-so-strong immune system. And I should have mentioned this at the beginning: You get Vitamin D from the sunlight! Hence why it is a benefit.

And, backing off of this immunity, plants give off organic compounds that help to synthesize our bodies, helping to beef up our immune systems.

I mentioned that sunlight is good for Vitamin D, but it also raises our serotonin levels. Serotonin helps to keep us happy, and that, in turn, helps to ease our anxiety.

So getting outdoors, aside from getting us out from being cooped up inside of our homes, it helps to ease any of that anxiety we may have—especially now with the uncertainty of the coronavirus situation.

To sum it up, you get exercise, you get vitamin D, you get serotonin—you really can’t go wrong. I think a lot of people are a bit confused about what we can or can’t do during this time with the stay-at-home order. Get outside and enjoy the benefits of Mother Nature!