During this difficult time, we need to make time for self-care.
We are facing a pandemic unlike anything else that has happened in our lifetimes. That, combined with the uncertain political position of this country and the lack of preparation at the hands of our government, creates a perfect storm of panic, stress, and anxiety.
We are being called on as Americans to protect ourselves, and each other, by staying indoors. Some states have instituted mandatory procedures, while others are being more relaxed. The fact remains though, that this is a stressful time for everyone, and at one point or another you will most likely be quarantined in your home.
Social isolation is not easy for anyone, which is why it is used as a severe punishment in prisons. The mental effects of being completely isolated are terrible, especially for the elderly. Making time for your mental health, paying attention to your emotional state, and practicing self-care are the only ways to get through this. So here are a few tips on how to stay sane, and mindful during a quarantine.
READ MORE: Five Tips for Social Distancing
Groom Yourself. Ladies, if there was ever a time to let your leg (or facial) hair grow, it’s now. If letting yourself go physically brings you peace, by all means do it. That being said, in times of social isolation, we tend to pay less attention to grooming, and even physical hygiene. That’s all well and good, but shaving, grooming, and taking time for beauty regimens can have a positive effect on our mental health. So, if you find yourself feeling depressed on day seven, when your eyebrows have fused into one, and your legs look like furry Uggs, give grooming a try.
Meditate. You have probably been putting off meditating for years. But now, you have no more excuses and nothing but time. Make it your goal to learn meditation during your quarantine. The benefits of meditation far outweigh any fear you may have around it.
Clean. If your home isn’t clean, your mind won’t be either. During a lockdown it is especially important to keep a clean home. If things are tidy and orderly around you, your mind will follow suit. Now is a great time for a spring deep clean, especially if you have kids to help!
Journal and Reflect. When you are feeling mental anxiety, and your heart is racing but you don’t know why, I encourage you to journal. Writing down your thoughts (and especially emotions) is a way of expressing them without creating effects in the real world. Organizing your thoughts and emotions on your own allows you to understand them before you inflict them on anyone else. Just like meditation, if you have always wanted to try journaling, make it your goal right now. My one piece of advice: ‘Don’t be afraid to cross out your mistakes and keep writing.’ Peoples’ biggest fears around journaling often involve making a mistake. It’s life. Mistakes happen. Keep writing.
Exercise. The best thing you can do for your mental health during a quarantine is get physical. Designate at least 30 minutes per day to some kind of physical exercise. Get on Youtube and try all the fitness fads you’ve ever heard of. Make it a goal or a game. Share them on social media with the hashtag #StayatHomeChallenge. Regardless of how you choose to do it, make sure you get your blood pumping each and every day.
The most important thing to do during self isolation is to keep balance. Pay attention to your emotional, mental, and physical needs, and satisfy them. If we all do that on our own, we can get through this time together, and come out stronger on the other side.