Covid-19 has turned our world upside down. As uncertainty continues to rise, so does our stress and anxiety. But we don’t have to let that stress get the better of us. While we continue to adjust to this new way of life, so too can we find new ways to address and manage our stress.
Find a Routine
While sheltering in place, it’s easy to fall into a routine of rolling out of bed and onto the couch. When we don’t change out of our pajamas, it sends our brain a signal that it’s ok to be lazy. If we leave this cycle on repeat, we can feel ourselves slipping into a state of stress and anxiety. Instead, build a routine. When we complete tasks, even the smallest ones, we feel a sense of accomplishment.
● Set an alarm. Waking up at the same time every day balances melatonin and serotonin levels, naturally balancing mood.
● Make your bed. Making your bed every morning reminds your brain that there is progress happening, no matter how small.
● Wash your face. Washing your face and brushing your teeth is an essential form of self-care. Feeling better about yourself can help you face the day, and relieve stress.
● Get dressed. Changing out of pajamas lets our brains know that we are moving on to a different part of the day.
Hydration is key to lowering stress and helping our bodies stay balanced. When we are dehydrated, our cortisol levels (the stress hormone) begin to rise. Staying hydrated helps us deal with the stress of the day on a more even playing field. Drinking enough water keeps us balanced and can improve energy levels, brain function, and so much more. Water is good for almost every aspect of your health, so it’s no surprise it makes the list.
Rest and Relaxation
Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, your body needs time to recharge. Find a consistent sleep-wake balance that works for you. Go for a walk. Spending some time out in nature, even just a short walk around the block can give our minds a break. Whether you’re working from home or waiting to go back to the office, a little fresh air, a little exercise and a change of scenery helps break up the day. Meditation is proven to help us calm our minds and change our perspectives. Although it may be hard to find to quiet your mind with everything that is going on in the world, remember that meditation is a practice, not a perfect. There are several free apps and guided meditations to help get you started.
Remember to Breathe
We hope that these examples help you to find some relief. Remember, give yourself a break, we are all adjusting to new circumstances, and that adjustment will take time. Until then, we hope you can take some comfort in knowing we will get through this together, and you are not alone.