As we are exploring this new undocumented time, there is one thing that we all can agree on- the world has changed with little warning. There has been many new norms that we have all had to get used too. The disruption of normal daily life- working from home where we don’t have our work routine, our get -a-way, working while raising a family, running around with Lysol in one hand and rocking a baby in the other. While worried about how we might not have enough money to pay the rent or mortgage. Facing all of these stressors and losses in one fail swoop can wreck our emotional stability and provide a magnitude of stress for many of us.
We all deal differently with emotional stress. Number one thing to remember is that your feelings are valid and you are not alone; we are all in this together. If you are feeling overwhelmed there are seven things that you can do to help you maintain your mental health as you march on during this global pandemic.
1. Create Your Routine
Routine, create one. Manage a routine that both you and your family both can abide by. Set bedtimes and wake up times. Maintain set mealtimes, time for school, make a time for exercise and so forth. Knowing what to expect during your day will help provide security for you and your children.
Sleep, get about 7 to 8 hours are quality sleep. On top of that eat well, exercise and do something that you love for 15 minutes a day. Try to find what you love todo that will take your thoughts and emotions to a good place. One thing to keep in mind is that what you love might not be what everyone loves todo. Right now you have time to figure out what makes you happy. Read a book that you have been putting off, walk and soak up nature. Some might find peace in being creative, paint, sew, and even DYI projects that you have been thinking about but didn’t know how to get started or have the time. Sing out loud, or dance in the living room. Self care needs to happen each day. When you invest in yourself that will allow you to succeed in everything else that you do during your day.
3. Stay Social
Be social, find ways to stay connected to family and friends. With the amazing technology we have we are able to video chat with people we normally would see in a normal situation. We all need to interact with people and see that we are all in this together. Humans have a need and a want to be social and we aren’t meant to be alone so be creative find a way to stay connected while maintaining physical social distancing.
Get your body moving. We all need to keep our natural endorphins up and the best way to do this is to find creative ways to exercise. This will build not only good physical health but improve your immunity, promote positive mental health, create a stronger positive outlook to life. Stress will build up in the body and it can be seen and felt. So get your heart pumping each day for at least 20 minutes. Let go of that stored stress and you will feel amazing.
Live in the now. Listen to your body, being mindful to how your feeling, your actions, and thoughts without discernment. Being mindful is something we need to practice. Having a clear focus on the day and not on your past will prove to be beneficial to your mental status. Currently there is a magnitude of free apps that will help you find focus and get you started.
6. Name Your Feelings
Know what your feeling, say it out loud. Understand that your feelings are okay to have them it will be how we react to those feelings that will matter. When we can name the feelings this will provide you a sense of release and allow you to proceed through them. Everyday emotions that we feel might be, sad, happy, frustrated, angry or scared. This technique will also help your children, so practice with them how to name those feelings so you can move forward.
7. Get Outside
Get outside! Take a deep breath and absorb the sunshine. Doing this several times a day will help you find peace and tranquility. If you have a backyard, porch or even a balcony find the time to enjoy the outside and get back in touch with nature. Your body will release those positive endorphins and you will be able to renew your love for the outside.