We are facing a new level of uncertainty that can cause anxieties to increase. People around the world are being greatly impacted in many ways by the current health crisis. One thing we know for sure among this uncertainty is that this pandemic will pass.
Meanwhile, what can we do to get through this? We all have different ways of expressing ourselves with different talents and capabilities. First and foremost, self-care is more important than ever. I find that having a sense of routine helps to keep me accountable to follow though and get things done. Here are some things that work for me in making the most of each day:
Looking online for new tips and ideas for activities
Many wonderful ideas are being shared online. I had never previously envisioned myself taking the time or finding the time to enjoy some of these activities. I’m now finding different ideas to try out and it is fun discovering new things that I enjoy. Things such as learning a new language online, puzzles and board games, growing my own herbs and online yoga classes.
Reaching out to friends, family, colleagues and neighbours is more important than ever
Extending kindness to others and holding a space for understanding and listening to one another during a stressful time is therapeutic. Not only for the person sharing but often for the person listening too.
We know that nourishing our body with good foods boosts our immunity
Eating a balanced diet which includes fresh fruits, vegetables, good fats and proteins are vital for good health and energy. Freshly squeezed fruit and vegetable juices are a great way of adding an extra boost of nutrients.
Staying up to date with new regulations that affect us is important
However, it’s also important to limit the intake of media and be mindful that we are accessing a trusted media source. Tuning into a trusted source once a day to keep informed and updated is all that we need to do.
Watching a new series, documentaries on topics of interest, new movies, or old movies are a better way to occupy our mind than have news channels play out throughout the day. If movies are not for you, make up a play list of favourite songs.
Taking time out to relax our mind and meditate is another way to boost our immune system and is a tool that can help improve our overall mental health
Even a few minutes a day can make a difference. There are many meditations on YouTube and group meditations available online. Practicing and focusing on our breathing is also an important way of improving our realities, mental health, lowering our blood pressure, and improving circulation.
It’s recommended that breathing in through our nose and into our abdomen for a count of 3-4, holding for a count of 2 and breathing out for a count of 7-8 though our mouth. Doing this 3-4 times a few times a day can help to improve our overall state of wellbeing.
Projects around the house or garden
This is a time when we can learn something new, study a course we have not got around to doing, such as art and craft, painting or drawing, or learning an instrument. There are many helpful videos on YouTube and many classes online. Now is a great time to pick up and bring to fruition the things that we have put off due to lack of time in our busy day to day lives.
During times of self-isolating we may move around less than usual. Remember to stretch, take a walk or jog if possible, tune into YouTube and find perhaps a yoga instructor to follow. There are options of seated yoga for anyone unable to sit or lay on the floor. Turning into a session on Zoom with a friend to enjoy this activity together can give you both social and physical interaction. Activities like this help to keep our body from ceasing up and keeps our circulation going while maintaining connections with others.
Helping each other
Even though strict social distancing measures are in place there are ways we can help one another. Like staying in regular contact with family and friends, making a phone call to a friend or a loved one we haven’t talked to in a while, or sharing our phone number with an elderly neighbour so that they have someone to call for a chat if needed, donating packaged food to someone in need, starting a Facebook page or forum for others to connect and offering acts of kindness to those around us.
Feeling a bit overwhelmed is normal and okay
With all that’s going on due to the sudden changes, on top of our usual everyday stresses, we can feel overwhelmed and that’s okay. It’s okay to have days where we don’t feel like doing anything, it’s okay to have days where it’s hard to be positive. Sometimes all we need to do is be kind to ourselves and by being mindful of the words and thoughts going around in our minds. It helps to speak to ourselves the same way as we speak to a loved one or a child. Sometimes all we need to do are the basic day to day activities to get us by, and that is enough.
Remember that this is temporary
We can use this time to re-evaluate how we want our lives to look after this goes away. Do we want to go back to as we were before? Or, are there new or relearned lessons that we can take from this experience? Maybe by doing more hands on and more meaningful activities that keep our minds and bodies connected, not only with ourselves but with others around us.
I have worked in the health care profession for more than 15 years throughout Australia and have specifically dedicated my work and study within the mental health sector for the past 10 years in various roles. I feel blessed to be able to genuinely love what I do and that I have the opportunity to meet and connect with many wonderful people on different journeys and paths of life.