This goes without saying, but living through a global pandemic is a stressful experience. To make sure you are taking care of your mind and body, you must do what you can to mitigate the stress and anxiety you might be feeling.
Now more than ever, it’s important to prioritize your mental health and well being. If you’re looking for some ways to practice self-care while at home, check out our recommendations:
You have heard this one before. Countless studies indicate that exercising regularly has positive effects on your mental health and well-being. Although we are in quarantine, you still have options. Check out Heather Robertson on Youtube for quick workout videos and free exercise plans. Or, you can click here to try Nurse Suzie’s yoga for stress relief.
*Note, if you aren’t a runner or you hate home workouts, don’t sweat it! There are many ways to get active. Check out this Get Moving! Calculator from the Calorie Control Council, a food and beverage industry group. It shows how much activity you can get from ordinary tasks like dusting, vacuuming, or gardening. The important thing is that you do something to move your body.
Take Care of Your Immune System
It’s important to take time to care for your body. The best way to do this is eating a balanced diet, getting plenty of sleep, and sticking to your supplement routine. In particular, make sure you are taking your probiotic regularly. Studies show that your gut is mission control for your immune system, so make sure your gut flora are getting the bacteria they need.
Probiotics also help relieve stress and balance your mood! For more info on which supplements can help improve your immune system, click here! You can also check out our conversation with Rosemary Squires, RD, to learn more about which foods are best for your immunity.
Studies show that practicing mindfulness is a great way to reduce stress, improve concentration, and reduce the risk of emotional exhaustion (otherwise known as burnout). Actively trying to do this involves sitting still and just focusing on the present -- noticing what is going on around you and letting it pass.
If you aren’t sure where to start, you can download an app like Calm, or Headspace, and follow along with one of their guided meditations. Remember that it is called practicing mindfulness, so don’t beat yourself up if you get distracted the first time you try. Taking the time to create a space for yourself to relax is half the battle.
Take Up a New Hobby
If you have a lot of extra time on your hands and you aren’t sure what to do with it, maybe now is the time to try a new hobby! People all over the internet have been trying their hand at making homemade bread, learning to knit, gardening, and many other ways to pass the time. If there is something you have always been interested in trying, but you’ve never had the time, go for it!
If you aren’t sure where to start, this BuzzFeed quiz might help.
Studies indicate that keeping a gratitude journal can improve your mood, reduce stress, and improve your life satisfaction. It’s also something that is pretty easy to do. Pick up a spare notebook and write down three things every day that you are grateful for, and think about the factors in your life that have contributed to those good things. For example, you might have had a delicious lunch, because your roommate took the time to make dinner last night and there were leftovers this morning.
If you are feeling lazy, you can also practice gratitude by taking a few minutes before you go to sleep or right after you wake up to think about the things you are grateful for in your life. Alternatively, you could write a thank you letter to someone expressing your appreciation for that person’s presence in your life. Studies show that this not only benefits you by encouraging you to focus on a positive aspect of your life, but it also brings joy to the recipient.
Times like these are difficult, but with the right toolkit, we will get through it together. As always, we are here if you have any questions or just want to chat. You can reach our health professionals at [email protected], through our chat portal, or by scheduling a telehealth consultation here.