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Self-care for vegans in a non-vegan world

Tips to avoid burnout

Give yourself ‘downtime’ — and enforce it!

It is so important to make time for yourself, and that means not helping others, not working, and not doing activism. This can be as little as 30 minutes a day doing an activity you enjoy, such as going for a walk, going to an exercise class, having a bath or meditating.

Make this a priority, it’s easy to let ‘me time’ slide when there are other seemingly more important things to do.

Make vegan friends

It can be hugely stressful and isolating to feel like you’re the only salmon swimming upstream.

Not having your morals understood by friends and family can have a negative impact on mental wellbeing and can be incredibly demotivating. Having vegan friends can make a big difference in feeling that you are supported and understood.

Search for a local vegan group online and, if there isn’t one, then start your own! If you’d rather chat with people online, there are plenty of vegan Facebook groups where you can make friends and chat in a supportive environment.

Spend time with animals.

Compassion fatigue can leave us feeling demotivated and pessimistic about our impact on the suffering of billions of farmed animals.

Spending time at farm animal sanctuaries and watching the residents thriving is a good antidote to watching harrowing factory farm footage — it helps remind us what we’re fighting for.

Outside of lockdowns, many farm sanctuaries have open days, but when you can’t physically spend time with the animals, most of them upload adorable videos for their supporters to enjoy.

Focus on the positives The truth is, you’re probably having a far bigger impact than you think you are.

Even outcomes you might consider small, like your friend asking you questions about vegan nutrition, or your aunt liking the vegan cupcakes you made, are all seeds planted. Keep a gratitude diary and write down every time something like this happens to remind yourself — I bet it happens more than you think!

Viva! is positively vegan and since 1994 has been campaigning to end the suffering of farmed animals. Viva! helps people reduce their meat, fish, dairy and egg intake and move towards a compassionate diet. It believes that every step towards being vegan is a positive one.

www.viva.org.uk

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About Sandy

Sick of eating steamed vegetables time after time? Tired of making the same old meals? Make things exciting and fun, and explore vegetarian cooking with the recipes in this book. Don’t think that ‘meat’ can’t be part of your vegetarian diet! Even if you’re just interested in vegetarian dishes, you can make your own ‘meat’. You hear me! “Make your own meat!” I will show you the traditional Chinese way of making vegetarian meat. The possibilities are endless after you learn how! You can make Kung Po Chicken, Soft Blow Kidney, Sweet and Sour Chicken, and so much more. Learn and digest the recipes in this book. Then get creative, make your own dishes, and really explore vegetarian cooking.

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