- Use news only to be informed
- Try the 5-second practice
- Reach out to your friends
- Take care of your mental health
- Take a break from social media
- Take care of your body
- Take time off work
- Engage yourself in other activities
- Use more e-books/podcasts/ relaxing music
- Work on yourself
It’s been more than a year that we have been hit by the Coronavirus. We were almost gearing up to go back to our normal lives when the second wave threw us off the rails.
With the terrifying news of uncontrollably increasing cases and rising death tolls, we all have been grappling with the situation the best we all can.
What we have realized are the sudden uncertainties that are eating their way into our mental health. The constant fear for our near and dear ones has brought with it the ever-lurking anxiety.
So, to continue with our work from home we need to avoid being anxious as much as possible.
Use news only to be informed
As much as we need to remain informed of the situation, hogging onto the screen all the time won’t help. That’s unhealthy, clearly because it is the news channel’s job to present the reality and not always will it be peachy.
You need to understand your capacity of taking in the numbers and reality. Whenever you feel you are on the brink of feeling overwhelmed, switch off the TV immediately.
Do not try to get yourself back at your desk immediately. Instead, walk around the house at a fast pace until you feel the nervous energy subsiding and drink a glass of water.
Finally, when you get back to your seat, close your eyes, sit upright and take deep breaths for 3 counts, acknowledge that it is the reality and the best you can do to keep yourself and loved ones safe is by following protocols and being cautious.
Try the 5-second practice
We, humans, are social beings and this last 1 year has taught us the necessity and importance of being outside and having human connections.
So, when suddenly you are being made to stay put in the confines of your house, it can become strenuous and have various impacts on the mind and body.
You might find it hard to get up in the morning (which previously was a piece of cake) or be feeling cranky and snappy.
In such situations, this 5-second rule by Mel Robbins helps to stop overthinking and prepare yourself for the day. Whenever you find yourself feeling anxious, procrastinating, overthinking close your eyes and slowly count 5 but backward (5-4-3-2-1) and move.
This practice is said to help overpower the snooze button or any self-sabotaging thought process and jolt you back into action.
According to Robbins, this counting of 5 helps to disrupt the overthinking that was making you snooze and help you focus on the task at hand by activating another part of your brain.
Reach out to your friends
It’s natural to feel lonely and cut off when put under house arrest, but safety first. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t stay in contact with your friends.
If not every day, arrange for a video call/ voice call with your friends and catch up. You can even play together virtually or start a watch party. At a watch party, you and your friends can get together virtually and watch your favorite movies.
A video call can help you take your mind off the negative and a fresh face can help break the mundane evening ritual.
Try to avoid discussing too much on a topic that can cause anxiety to both, instead focus on other things like a new movie or series either of you has watched, some new music you have discovered in these months, etc.
Take care of your mental health
This pandemic has made us confront our mental health conditions more seriously than ever.
Times are difficult and the only way to combat the situation is by taking care of yourself, both physically and mentally. Do not hesitate to reach out to therapists for help, after all, they are trained and can address the issues on a deeper level than anyone else.
Remember, you can fight the situation better with a healthy mind and body!
Take a break from social media
Social media has been a blessing for all, but sometimes it adds to your anxiety. As we said earlier, too much of anything is bad for health.
So, try to practice taking a break from social media at least a day or two a week. This will help you get time to focus on other activities and divert your mind from negativity.
You can also adjust your screen-time on your phone to help you keep your unnecessary browsing of social media in check. You can adjust your screen-time in the Settings option of your phone.
Take care of your body
A healthy body can keep your mind and heart in good shape. By this time, we all are aware and have created our workout space within our homes.
This second set of lockdown had physical trainers and gyms ready, consult with your trainer and keep working on helping your health get better.
If you want to workout alone, you can opt for the fitness apps like cult.fit to keep up with your workouts. They provide a wide array of workout forms to help you keep engaged towards working on your health.
But just exercise is not enough for good health, what you consume matters the most. If you are unaware of your dietary habit, consult with dieticians online.
All they will need are a few basic information about yourself like weight, height, and any medical history to curate your diet plan and explain where you have been going wrong. Try to avoid following internet diet fads and let the professional take care of it.
In addition, try to avoid ordering from outside, junk food and refined sugar as these not only harm your body but can also impact your mental health.
Take time off work
Staying inside 24x7 along with the constant news of the rising cases and watching the virus slowly creep its way into your personal spheres can be a lot to handle.
Take a day or two off from work, if you find yourself feeling overwhelmed and unable to focus.
But when you do so, keep your phone away as well and just focus on spending time with yourself and with your family.
Engage yourself in other activities
As deadly and saddening the situation is, make sure to make the most of the time. Remember that old instrument gathering dust sitting in the corner of the room? Pick it up and play it again!
Do you have a beautiful space for a home garden? Wonderful! Get working on that! Bring some color and greenery right inside your house. Mother earth is a natural therapy expert and vibrant colors can help uplift your mood even if struck by the regular Monday blues.
Do you know what else you could do? Involve your family members in it. Bring out your board games, that carrom board, your deck of UNO… Teach them if they don’t know how to play cards like UNO, team up, and play to get a good laugh!
Use more e-books/podcasts/ relaxing music
Work from home has its pros and cons, a major one being increased screen-time on our laptops.
Your eyes need rest for a good night’s sleep and your mind to rest properly. If you find it tiring to pick up a book to read, you can choose e-books that are read out or even podcasts to help you to relax.
In addition, if you don’t feel like doing either, turn on some meditative music to help calm you down.
You can either listen to music or turn on the sound of waves or raindrops to help you relax. Such music has been benefitting many who feel stressed or have anxiety as it calms down the nerves, helping you to relax.
Work on yourself
An idle mind is a devil’s workshop... In this case, self-sabotaging thoughts leading to anxiety can take place if you are focusing too much on the negative.
Instead, grab this opportunity to work on the best version of yourself. Pick up some online courses that can help you to upskill and progress in your career.
You can also choose to pick up some courses on other areas of interest like learning a new language, sewing (crocheting), calligraphy, nutrition, fitness so on and so forth.
This will keep you engaged and add something to look forward to as well as help you gain knowledge or add a hobby.
To conclude, anxiety is a sneaky devil which will always be on the lookout to make a comfortable home in your mind.
So, the best way to keep it far far away from you is to keep yourself in various activities and be around positive energies. A simple board game with family can bring joy and laughter that can help keep the anxiety away for good and help build communication.
Hope you find these tips helpful (I would seriously suggest you try the 5-second rule, it surely helped me on my bad days).
Stay safe, be healthy, maintain all safety measures!