“Self-isolation, quarantine, rising-statistics;” these are just a handful of bywords that we have seen circulate the media this week, and most likely for the foreseeable. It’s enough to make anyone concerned and apprehensive as to what’s in store for our future. But during these times of crisis and uncertainty, we’ve seen a surge of unprecedented compassion and selfless behaviour rise to our planet’s surface; we’ve watched communities join together to raise spirits and help one another – without an expectation for anything in return – to display a kinder side to humanity when it’s needed the most. For once, it feels like our globe is united. Despite this, many of us will struggle to stay optimistic and hopeful, which will ultimately result in a decline in our mental health and wellbeing. So, what steps can we be taking to ensure that we are doing the most to safeguard our emotional and physical comfort?
Join In With The Communal Spirit:
See how you can offer help in your community; are there any online groups joining together to offer support to those in need? Or are any local charities or food banks looking for an extra hand in ensuring that everyone is receiving their basic necessities? A simple favour like asking your neighbour if they need anything can go a long way, whilst providing us as individuals with a sense of purpose amongst the largescale ambiguity.
Learn Meditation, Journaling and Channelling Nervous Energy:
Without the daily luxuries that distract us from what’s important, self-isolation shines a light on the most basic of privileges we normally miss in our day-to-day lives. Turning to spirituality can bring hope and optimism into your home and offer a sense of level-headedness and calm for a few moments each day. But not everyone is expected to be spiritual in order to engage in these holistic therapies; 10-minutes of meditation per day can provide mental clarity and relaxation whilst, for many, putting pen to paper can help individuals understand and process their emotions in a more rational and logical manner.
As many of us face major changes from our usually busy lifestyles, an increase in physical nervous energy is something be expected. Although we could be using this time to wind down, a lot of us will find this practice difficult and unachievable if this is something that we are not accustomed to. If you’re feeling physically apprehensive, try and keep yourself and your body busy through engaging in activities that gives this surplus energy a purpose. Indulge in something that relaxes you, whether this be spending an extra few minutes on your skincare regime, taking up a craft hobby or investing time into cooking up something you normally wouldn’t prioritise.
Get Your Trainers On:
Motivation may be running low and heading to the gym may be the last thing you want to do right now, but getting some exercise can boost your mood and release endorphins that will keep you feeling positive and brighter. There are plenty of home-workouts available at our fingertips; from social media aficionados posting home-based / no-equipment-needed regimes to digging out your old ‘Insanity’ DVD for a quick living room cardio blast, your brain and your body will feel a boost in energy and help you form a constructive mindset for the rest of the day.
Times like these can be lonely and isolating for many of us but, just because you physically can’t be there, doesn’t mean that we are cut off from the outside world. Checking in with family and friends is a great way to keep your mind at ease, whilst also providing valuable time for you to catch up on each other’s lives. Arrange a time for your family to jump on a group call, and spend the duration of your contact together celebrating recent achievements and offering support for any difficult times they may be facing. One text or phone call can transform someone’s day for the better.
Plan Your Next Travel Adventure
Although the likelihood of a vacation is looking slim, now is the perfect time to get searching, scrolling and brainstorming for your next escape. Use the spare time to scope out local delicacies, off the beaten track hideaways and challenge yourself to some excursions that would normally not receive a second glance. If you’re feeling unmotivated, disheartened or frustrated due to your holiday being cancelled or postponed, setting up a Pinterest platform or a vision board dedicated to travel inspiration is an effective way to visualise and manifest your thoughts, alongside converting your negative reactions into more hopeful aspirations.
Reclaim Your Old Reading Glasses:
Re-visit an old favourite, pick up that book you gave up on halfway through or opt for something different to your usual repertoire. Putting aside time to lose yourself in a book can provide a temporary solace and an opportunity to escape from the tribulations of reality. If you’re struggling with the decline in communal contact, joining an online book club is a great opportunity to form communities for new recommendations and social interaction. Getting involved with like-minded people, in a space curated especially for your interests, is the perfect chance to create new friendships from the comfort of your home and introduce an element of excitement into your day.
Stick To Your Routine:
Routines and daily habits aid in keeping us grounded and upholding our sense of purpose. Although the temptation to stay in bed a few hours longer or spend the entire day binge-watching Netflix may creep up on you, it’s important to remember that routinely practices are essential in helping us cope with major life changes and rising stress levels. Keep your alarm on and stick to your diary as much as possible; your sleep-cycle and self-esteem will thank you. However, if you struggle with forming a routine on a regular basis, now is the time to kickstart new habits that will change your daily practice, ultimately leading to a much more effective and consistent lifestyle. Simple tasks from making your bed in the morning to spending five minutes an evening practicing self-gratitude can introduce a new awareness of control into your lifestyle and encourage a wider positive outcome.