The world is a strange place isn’t it now? Many of us are on lockdown, not going out for other than essential things. Maybe work and food. This is challenging for everyone. In different ways for everyone. Disruption of routine, boredom, stress, worry about health, loss of valued recreational and social activities, anxiety about what is coming and will happen are difficult for all of us in different ways. And messages are mixed what we should do. Hunker down and rest? Use the time to come out better and amazing on the other side? I have heard both from different people and things I have seen. I don’t pretend to know the answer. I am struggling with this myself. But a few things that can help can be on either side of this equation. We are biopsychosocial creatures, and our overall health depends on keeping each area of ourselves as healthy as we can. So lets address those areas as best we can while in quarantine.
- Keep connection with the people in your social circle as best you can. We are social beings, not being able to see and enjoy our family and friends in the usual ways is hard. Make an effort to call, or video chat, or stand at the fence and talk to your neighbor. We need each other now.
- Stay physically active. Moderate exercise is helpful in so many ways. If you can do it outside even better. It is good for immunity, overall health, and our psychological well being. This has been disrupted for a lot of us. Gyms are closed, exercise classes are closed, parks and other areas are limited. There are many resources online for home body weight exercises, virtual fitness classes and other things. Maybe not the same, but something. If you can get outside do it daily. Take a walk, work in the garden, ride your bike. Just use common sense to keep distance with people and if recreation areas look crowded move along or come back at a different time.
- Find ways to express your creativity and do things you enjoy. Even if its not “productive” these things are great for mental health. What you may enjoy is different than everyone else. Do what feels right to you. Cooking, writing, drawing, painting, cleaning out the garage, gardening, building. If that means learning a new skill, great. If that means being super productive, and having the time to pursue a new thing fantastic, if that means just aimlessly creating to limit boredom, thats also great.
- And most of all be kind to yourself and those you live with. These are uncharted waters for all of us. There is grief and loss and stress and uncertainty we are all processing. We need time to deal with that and come to terms with it. Sometimes its ok to not be ok, for us and the ones nearest us.
I hope you find these ideas helpful. I will be focusing some posts on the exercise part of all this in upcoming days as this is what my area of expertise is. If you have any specific exercise questions drop them here or to Keith@ascent-pt.com