It seemed like overnight that our lives shifted significantly. The novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19, has directed our attention toward personal health and the safety of our families and our communities. That has meant abiding by social distancing standards, washing our hands frequently, and even wearing facial covers all in order to reduce the spread of this virus.
It has brought on more significant matters such as unemployment and home-schooling, which for some has led to an increase in stress, worry, anxiety, and depression. With these emotional upsets and the increase of uncertainty during this pandemic, there seems to be a limitation of resources to help move through the difficult feelings.
Typically, we would have social gatherings, in-person therapy visits, aerobics classes, or sporting events that help relieve mental stress. But now with these things temporarily cancelled, it makes self-care a little bit more challenging. We are certainly moving through a time that is new and different. It hasn't been easy getting a firm foothold on the current situation and what is to come. What we all want and need is a steady foundation. Something that keeps us grounded while we anticipate our futures.
It all begins with taking care of yourself!
We are familiar with the notion that it is important to take care of yourself before you can fully take care of others. Many have families to care for and other obligations that requires attention. In order to be fully present and be able to take care of the needs of others, you must first focus on yourself.
2. Let's take a look at a few things that you can do to start this process:
A Healthy Routine
As mentioned above, starting with the mere basics of self-care is essential: getting enough sleep and eating well. Simple routines like bathing every day, brushing your teeth, creating a schedule for the day, and eating a healthy breakfast are other tasks to consider when making a plan to take care of yourself. This will start the process of relieving any stress you may be holding in your body.
Why is de-stressing important?
As you know, stress levels are high in our recent times, and we must remain diligent to stave it off. Stress leads to conditions like hypertension, depression, and other damaging health issues. When stress persists, it lowers your immune system so you are more susceptible to common illnesses like the flu. And you know very well, that you cannot afford to be under the weather when others may be depending on you for support.
Stress directly affects your central nervous system. When under stress, your muscles become tense, your heart rate and pulse increase, cortisol is released into the bloodstream, it's difficult to sleep or relax, you lose your appetite, and many other symptoms may occur. Being in this constant state is detrimental to your entire system. Not only are you unable to take care of your daily obligations, but your overall health is compromised. It is important to recognize how damaging stress can be and to take action.
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Take Care of Your Basic Needs
Having your own support system in place is essential during this time. In the midst of uncertainty, you may be experiencing a sense of unrest, mental exhaustion from worrying about the future. You may feel ungrounded because you do not know what the next day will bring in these tormenting times. Fear can be quite overbearing and sometimes difficult to shake on your own.
Speak Your Mind. Talk to Someone.
If you're in a position where you have family or friends around you, take advantage of their presence and talk about how you are feeling. Be open and honest with each other. These are troubling times and we do not need to pretend that everything is "ok" Take the time with your loved ones to express any sadness or anxiety. Ask questions, listen to one another. You will all see that many of you share the same emotions. And once you talk to one another about your true feelings, much of that stress diminishes. A sense of relief washes over you. Your body will feel less tense. Your mind will feel more at ease knowing that others feel the same as you.
Use Technology to Gap Social Distancing
Not everyone has family or friends around them. Some may live alone or have limited social connections. Being isolated can heighten the sensation of anxiety and depression. Worry and negative self-talk tend to to increase in this time of isolation. If you are not in the position to speak with friends or family in the same household, then it is time to pick up the phone or take advantage of our social media devices.
Although the element of physical closeness is absent from this strategy, it still offers the opportunity to connect when you may be feeling alone and out of sorts. Talk to a friend on the phone. Use video chatting resources to see each other when you talk. Share the hard thoughts. Share some laughs. This is all good medicine as you combat the underlying stressful feelings. Provide support to one another. It is ok to be vulnerable; it is not a sign of weakness. In truth, it is a sign of strength when you're able to divulge those challenging feelings. You'll find that others do want to help and support you in any way they can.
Seek Professional Help if Necessary
Are you in need of more than just a phone call with a friend? Is your anxiety or depression more serious and you need professional assistance? There is no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed by having these strong emotions. Speaking with a therapist may be the next step if you're finding it a challenge to manage your mental health. Luckily, there are also online services that offer professional assistance from licensed therapists. They are trained practitioners who can listen to what you're going through and offer suggestions and non-judgmental let alone feedback to help you get back on your feet. They may provide strategies to fine-tune your current lifestyle to work through the stressful moments.
Exercise to Remain both Mentally and Physically Fit
While staying indoors can be overwhelming and stressful, it can also take your physical fitness away. Most of us depended on Gym, Yoga classes or Pilates, etc. to remain fit which are now temporarily closed. It is important to know how to continue our exercises at home, however form it may be in and more important to know that it is very much possible. There are several online Applications and Influencers with instructional videos that will help you remain fit and healthy at home during this Pandemic. Try Maji Sports HOME FITNESS, MUSCLE RECOVERY & YOGA BUNDLES with everything you need for Fitness & Muscle Recovery along with Yoga accessories at the best prices online.
As you find yourself in these current uncertain times, do your best to stay present. Explore what you can do right now to feel better when things are tough. It can be a very simple task: take a nap, eat a healthy snack, talk to a friend. They may sound simple, but they are truly effective when it comes to walking down a path of positive self-care.
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