For the past month, so many things have changed, so many plans have fallen apart. An umbrella of uncertainty has covered the whole world. Fear and anxiety have gotten into even the calmest of us. Taking care of your mental health in times like this is as important as taking care of your immunity and physical health.
Here are some simple ideas on how to keep it sane and positive while staying at home.
I am a list freak so I made this list on the first day of quarantine and even that it has simple activities it has been helping me a lot through those days of storms made of mixed feelings.
Catch up on all the books you have never started or had time for. Go back to all those times you were telling yourself “I need to start reading more.” or “I wish I had more time to read.” Well, surprise,the universe has arranged it!:)
Play your favorite music loud and make yourself a dance party. Change outfits, put on some fun accessories, your favorite work out clothes, or even in your underwear. Dance freely like nobody is watching because nobody is. Movement helps the body release pressure and uplifts the mood. Dance in front of the mirror and try some new dance moves, after all, you might find your new signature move for when everything goes back to normal.
Nobody cares about your singing skills at this moment. Download a karaoke app or just play the songs you love and sing it like you are driving. Singing out loud helps the body release build up pressure and also balances the Throat Chakra. (I will have another post about Chakras linked here soon)
Woohoo, that’s one of my favorites! We all agree that it’s a hard thing to start and we are all postponing it for a while. But once you start it gets easier and easier. I declutter my closet almost every 6 months but haven’t done other parts of the apartment for a good while. Everything holds energy and to get a new one you need to release the old. Once you start Marie Kondo-ing your stuff you will find old treasures. You realize that some of the stuff you even forgot you have, don’t fit or you will never wear/use again. Donate those! Imagine how happy somebody would be to have them and let go. Even if it seems hard at first (and I am sure there will be moments of questioning your decision) the moment you give them away, you forget about them and It’s LIBERATING! I promise!
What if I am not creative? YOU ARE! Trust me! Creativity has nothing to do with talent. Creativity is like a muscle, we all have it and the more you exercise it the better it gets. If you have never been into creating stuff, start small – get a coloring book, puzzle, or even a Lego. You will see how little by little your flow comes in and it’s fun. Paint(You don’t need to be Picasso), craft, anything DIY(I have a Pinterest obsession with those, I guess Pinterest in general), knit, make music, photo collage, just anything. You will see how time flies and no matter what you’ve made it gives you this little tingling feeling of pride.
Even if you don’t consider yourself the Martha Stewart of the house find a recipe that you love and treat yourself to it. Or cook your all-time childhood meal/dessert. Or even experiment a little, the word is yours!
7. EXERCISE/TAKE A WALK
Exercise at home with some yoga stretches or some new YouTube home work out video. If the weather allows it (In Chicago – not so much) go for a bike ride, rollerblading, or just a walk in your neighborhood. Even though everything is closed I am sure you will find some cool spots for when life goes back to normal. When I am feeling extra adventurous I go to a neighborhood far from my house and I am definitely finding spots I never knew exist. (Mask, gloves, headphones and a cool podcast/music makes it so fun)
8.WATCH A MOVIE/TV SHOW/DOCUMENTARY
Don’t judge yourself if you get stuck on Netflix. This is time to feed your soul whatever it needs. Catch up on some rest and shows/movies that you’ve heard about never started. We are so lucky to have access to so much content through the internet nowadays, so enjoy!
I know it’s hard, especially when you feel all the fear and anxiety going on in the world right now. But to calm your mind you don’t need to sit in quiet for 60 minutes to call it a meditation. Find what works best for you and what suits you. There are so many ways to quiet your mind and relax. (here is a link to some easy ways to implement meditation to your daily life).
Having a little notebook and a pen next to your bed is very helpful. Doing gratitude journaling first thing after you wake up helps your day start in a positive way. (here is an easy guide to find gratitude in every day). Another thing you can journal about is your dreams. This one is a little hard since most of the time if I don’t write them down ASAP I forget everything, you know how dreams are.:)) Write about your feelings, your thoughts, plans, obstacles about anything. As soon as we lay it out on the paper we release it if it’s a bad feeling and we see it more clearly if it’s a plan or idea. Journaling is a poor people’s therapist. Talking about all the things you need to talk about, and it doesn’t seem like you are talking to yourself, because you are writing it instead:) Especially now with the situation in the world, we all have those feelings that change every day and we are not sure how should we feel about the everything that’s happening – journaling really helps.
11. SELF-CARE DAY
Take a nice aromatic bath with candles, Epsom salts, and a book. Get a face mask. I always find nice DIY face masks on Pinterest and also absolutely love the Aztec’s Clay Mask) Get your nails done. Everybody deserves a self-care spa day of relaxation!!!
12.TALK TO A FRIEND /FAMILY
We have no excuse now for not having time to catch up with our friends and family, plus it helps us realize that we are all in the same situation and dealing with the same emotions, questions, and uncertainty… It’s such a great feeling to catch up or just share and feel supported. Send somebody that you haven’t talked to in a while a message, catch up with old friends that you haven’t talked to in years.
13.LEARN SOMETHING NEW
Learn the new language that you never had time for. Learn to play an instrument, or start a new online course, anything that you have always wanted to learn but never had time for. At least now there is so much information and you can learn almost anything online. Adding an extra skill would be helpful for when everything goes back to normal.
Play with the furniture a little bit and change/reposition something. I mean don’t break it by rearranging parts. Move the couch, little tables, be creative, and find a new way to rearrange it. BUILD A FORTH! That will give you the feeling of being somewhere new and won’t be tired of staying home and seeing the same things in the same places every day.
Spring Cleaning!!!:) Pretty self-explanatory. And now we have all the time in the world to do it.
16.LOOK AT OLD PHOTOS
So much fun and memories, good times, beautiful places. It could be a little melancholic but also very positive and recharging. It reminds me of all the memories and people I appreciate in my life and that the world would eventually go back to normal no matter what.
17. READ POSITIVE ARTICLES
A rain of negative and scary news has been falling over us for a month now. The more you read them the more anxious you get. Don’t forget to stay informed about the important stuff but don’t overwhelm yourself with too much of it. Filter the amount and the kind of news you are feeding your mind with because after all, YOU are the only one who can select the information you get. Find some positive, interesting news and articles that inspire you instead of scaring you.
Yes, you can volunteer while social distancing too! VolunteerMatch has so many remote volunteering options like online tutoring, making cards, and sending it to people in hospice or senior homes, teaching English to refugees, etc. Being in service of others not only helps them but it helps you feel more recharged, more inspired. Giving a little piece of your skills, energy, or time to others can make such a big difference in somebody’s day even if the only thing that brings them is a single smile.
This too shall pass and the only healthy way to go through it is taking care of ourselves and loved ones (physically and of us has been through something like that before so any reaction, thoughts, and feelings are normal and the only way out is trough so we can only wait and do meaningful things while doing so…