In order to slow the spread of the Coronavirus, health officials are asking us to self-quarantine and practice social distancing. This means that we will all be spending much more time in our homes for the foreseeable future. We will have to adjust to a new normal of our daily routines changing and not having the face-to-face social contact that we are used to, which helps us feel connected and positive. Due to this, it’s extremely important to prioritize our emotional and mental health. There are many ways you can show yourself some love and positivity while at home. These self-care practices not only help manage anxiety, but they can also support your health and give more structure to your days.
Treat yourself kindly
Being kind to yourself is one of the best self-care practices you can follow right now. You can’t exactly control what is going on in the world right now, but you can at least give yourself some self-compassion and acknowledge your feelings.
Even those who do not frequently struggle with anxiety are feeling more worried and anxious right now. If you are experiencing more anxiety than normal, practice self-compassion and do not be too hard on yourself.
Limit screen time and information intake
It is important to remain informed on what is going on in the world, however, watching and thinking about the news all day will only create unnecessary panic. Reduce stress and give your mind a break by taking some time throughout the day to give yourself space for positive thinking. Too much media exposure will leave you feeling overwhelmed – to avoid this, set a timer on your phone and when it goes off, go for a walk, spend time with a pet, play a game, or do a guided meditation.
Establish and stick to a daily routine
There is a lot going on right now, so it is imperative that you try to maintain your routine to the best of your ability. This will make your days feel more purposeful and structured. To give yourself a more balanced day, schedule your exercise, work, and food at a certain time. It is especially important to maintain your morning and bedtime routines.
Practice mediation and deep breathing to help reduce stress and anxiety
As the days go by, many people are experiencing higher levels of anxiety and when your mind is worrying, your immune system cannot function at its maximum potential. It’s important to keep in mind that panicking and stressing does not offer any protection against this virus.
Find a quiet place to take a few minutes to focus on your breathing to ground yourself – this will increase feelings of calm and relaxation. Throughout the day, pause to do some conscious breathing. Relax, be extremely still, and then silently count out ten slow deep breaths. During this time, focus all of your attention on the passage and feel of your in-breath and your out-breath.
Deep breathing unites us to our whole selves, provides necessary oxygen to our cells, and keeps us present. For an added boost to your respiratory system and mood, you can practice mindful breathing and aromatherapy with pure essential oils.
Just because you are social distancing does not mean you have to lay around on the couch all day. A great self-care practice to get your endorphins flowing and to boost energy is to move your body for at least 30 minutes a day.
To reduce anxiety levels, try aerobic exercises and resistance training. You can find a variety of free home workouts on YouTube. A great way to increase alertness when you wake up is to start with meditation or a morning stretch.
Make note of the positives in your life
It can be easy to look at what is going on in the world and view it all negatively, but what if you started focusing on the positives? Why not use this time to be thankful for all the good in your life?
This is a great chance to slow down, be present and thankful for moments that we often take for granted, such as taking a relaxing walk or spending more time with family or pets.
Look for opportunities for self-growth
With most of us at home, we all have more time on our hands, which provides a great opportunity for self-reflection. While we are all social distancing, it is a great time to tackle some goals and make the changes that you’ve always wanted to. For example, maybe you’ve been saying for years that you want to start meditating or you want to read more. Take some time to reflect on the changes you’re making that improve your overall well-being. Once this crisis passes, how can you maintain those habits? Examine the life you have been living and what you want to change. Begin by looking within yourself. In what ways can you declutter your mind, body, and spirit during this crisis? What positive things can you incorporate into your life to help you get through this?
Take care of your immunity
While we are not sure how to fully prevent or handle the damage caused by the Coronavirus, there are still some efforts we can take to try and stay as healthy as possible. Sea salt baths are a great way to reduce stress and boost immunity. Using sea salt increases mineral levels and lowers inflammation. Another way to relax is to place castor oil packs directly on your abdomen or liver to help pull toxins out of the body. You can also boost your immune system by taking intervals between cold and warm water in the shower – 1-minute warm followed by 15 seconds cold.
Don’t forget that you’re not alone
Staying connected during this time is very important. Facetime your family or have a virtual game night with your friends. While we are social distancing, this does not mean you should be social isolating. You just have to find some creative ways to stay connected with those you care about. We are all in this together and will come out stronger in the end. Do things for those in your community who may need help, like going to get groceries for an elderly neighbor. There are many ways to help and the best way to overcome this crisis is by doing what we can for each other.