Nobody could’ve imagined the time we are currently living in. The entire world is on complete or partial lockdown, all because of a nearly invisible virus — the coronavirus. While it is easy to enjoy staying at home for a few days, the indoors can certainly start feeling ominous after a period of time. Being locked in the same environment with very little to no time spent outside can be detrimental to our mental health. Since it is imperative that we stay indoors to keep ourselves and our community safe, it is also important to keep a check on our emotions.
In this uncertain period, it is easy to absorb negativity and fear because it’s being projected upon us from all directions. Even the strongest of people can lose hope if their emotions spiral out of control. Therefore, as important as it is to protect your physical health, it is also crucial to look after your mental health. Let’s take a look at what you can do during this trying lockdown to stay mentally fit—
Get up on time
It would do us good to stick to our natural body clock instead of sleeping in just because we have nowhere to be. Getting up and having meals on your usual time makes sure that we retain some normalcy of our routine.
Check the news intermittently
We cannot afford to switch off our televisions and dissociate. It is important to know what’s happening outside and stay updated. Still, it would do your mind good to watch news in breaks. Don’t listen to one type of news the whole day and absorb the fear dancing around the globe. Watch some comedy shows or documentaries in the meanwhile to take your mind off things.
Eat and cook healthy
Since we’re sitting around the whole day, it’s not a good idea to consume a lot of calories. Make sure that you’re eating healthy and avoid unnecessary munching on biscuits and snacks. Cooking is also a great activity — family members should take turns to cook every day so that it becomes fun!
Read those books
You’ve run out of excuses now. The pile of unread books is staring at you, waiting to be opened by you. Well, you’ve got a lot of time now! Reading before bed helps you sleep better, which will automatically keep you in the right mindset. If you need help choosing a book, check out our blog Off the Shelf: 7 Books Doctors Should Read.
Walk around often
A lot of us are working from home right now. Set up alarms every half an hour to get up and walk around the house. Stretching your legs is always a good idea and will prevent you from developing cramps.
Perfect time for yoga
There’s silence all around and you have unlimited internet connection. Start up a yoga tutorial video on YouTube and teach yourself. Yoga is proven to be beneficial for your body as well as mind. Deep breathing and stretching done early in the morning is the perfect start to a day.
While being afraid during this time is valid and normal, it is best to not fall prey to negative thoughts. Know that the best minds all over the world are working synergistically to put an end to this pandemic, and they will succeed. Replace your fear and anxiety with hope and blessings. Think positive thoughts and send out good vibes to the people fighting this pandemic first hand.
Music is your best friend
This is the perfect time to have karaoke nights with your family! Sing and dance to your favourite music to turn off the world for a while. Antakshari with your family members should be a norm by now!
Connect, connect, connect!
We are so lucky to live in an age that distance cannot interfere with our relationships. Our best of friends, relatives and colleagues are only a video call away. Make sure to check in with these people once in a while and spend some time talking to them.
Give your artistic side a chance
Now is the perfect time to express yourself through art. Bring out the old brushes and dried up paints to start making masterpieces. Colouring books are the best examples of stress busters, even for adults. If your plants are growing in basic brown pots until today, paint them to the best of your ability and give them a makeover. You can also give writing a hand! Writing or doodling in your journals is a great way to calm down your mind.
Now instead of bulk cleaning the house the day before Diwali, maybe just clean it bit by bit every day. Arrange your cupboard, pull out old clothes and belongings, dust your bookshelf, etc. so that the place you are confined to is clean. A clean environment works wonders for your mental health and keeps you peaceful.
Now that you don’t have cars honking every minute, take the time out to connect with nature (of course, don’t go out for that reason). Spend some time in your balcony appreciating the trees and birds, look at the sky that, because of less pollution, is showing you more stars than usual. We are a part of nature, so make sure you listen in to hear how happy it is today!
Spend time with your furry friends
Let’s face it— dogs are the clear winners of this lockdown. They get to be with you 24/7. Being with your pets is definitely the best way to beat stress, may it be a dog, a cat, a fish or even a bird.
This lockdown is a good opportunity for us to get in touch with our own selves. We have enough time to reflect on our day to day life and learn how it’s more beneficial to take things slow instead of stressing out. We are lucky to be sitting at homes and eating food and going to sleep on a bed. There are less fortunate people who don’t have access to these basic necessities, but are still practising social distancing. There are doctors, nurses, pharmacists, retail workers, delivery boys, sanitation workers, bankers and more employees who are acting as first hand responders to this pandemic. They are making sure life goes on smoothly and normally for us. We must salute these workers and pray for their families and health.