It goes without saying that we are currently living through one of the strangest times we will ever witness in our lifetime. What started off as a news story about something that was happening in China back in January has now turned into a global pandemic, which has turned our world on its head.
At the time of writing, the latest advice for all UK citizens is to stay home wherever possible, only go out once a day to exercise and visit the shop to buy essential foodstuffs only. High streets are deserted, schools – in the main – are closed.
Whether you’re following social distancing guidelines or self-isolating for health reasons, it can be an incredibly stressful time. You may live alone and crave company or you may be part of a large family unit, all closed in together with the danger of driving each other crazy before too long.
There are many measures you can take to stay healthy. Your mental wellbeing is just as important as your physical health. We’ve covered just 6 for now, which we hope you find helpful in some way.
By now, everyone should be in the habit of washing their hands for a minimum of 20 seconds. Try to avoid touching your face, and sneeze into a tissue and dispose of it immediately. Also, don’t forget to wipe down surfaces such as door handles, taps, worktops, TV remote controls ….. in fact, anything that regularly gets handled by members of your household.
As the saying goes, you are what you eat. A healthy diet will help to support a healthy immune system so try and eat healthily at every opportunity. Make use of a slow cooker and get creative in the kitchen – soups won’t break the bank and can be made from fresh, frozen or tinned veg to pack a nutritious punch. If you’re not a natural cook, there are plenty of tutorials on YouTube.
You’re not alone if your brain is buzzing from all the news stories, social media “advice” and life in general. We’re all under pressure so if your body and mind tell you they need a nap – take one. The only thing we’d advise is not to sleep all day as this will inevitably keep you awake all night! If dropping off at night is an issue, try a sleep app – there are some amazing ones out there – just find what works for you.
Under current guidelines, we’re allowed out once a day to exercise but this doesn’t mean you can’t exercise at home. Whether you go for an all-out assault with the housework (feel free to rope in the kids to help with that one!), opt for resistance training with a couple of tins of baked beans or join in with some of the online fitness classes that are available, you can stay active around the home. You may even find that exercising together as a family is fun – give it a try. We’d love to know how you all get on!
Keep In Touch
Make friends with technology – it’ll help you to keep in touch with family and friends during the enforced isolation period. You can make video calls on Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp – just a call a day can be reassuring if you or a loved one live on their own.
Mindfulness doesn’t have to mean sitting cross-legged on a yoga mat going “ummmmm”. It’s anything that keeps you aware of, and in, the moment. Easy starting points are adult colouring books, crafts such as knitting, crocheting or sewing, painting rocks, 5-minute breathing exercises or even just looking out of the window for a few minutes taking in the outside world. If you want to go a little deeper, there are apps available that offer guided meditations – all you need to do is follow them.
However you’re spending this very strange time, never be afraid to ask for help if you need it. We’re all facing the same unknown scenario but being human, we’ll all deal with it in different ways. Stay safe and stay home.