It is very difficult at the moment to remain positive while we are going through one of the most challenging times we will ever experience in our lives. I know what I’m about to say is easier said than done, but the main thing to remember during this quarantine is to stay well and healthy. The best thing to do is whatever makes you happy. Looking after yourself is one of the most important things to do, but it is also the one thing that everyone forgets.
Pets and nature
If you have a pet, they can be an absolute life saver, if you have watched Afterlife – they literally are. Dogs and cats are in tune with our moods and behaviour and dogs in particular have an uncanny way of looking at us, nudging us or just being there at the right time. Caring for another living creature that relies on us entirely will keep you focused. Having a pet is a proven positive for our mental health. Take this time to enjoy walks and the time spent with them. If you do not have pets but have a garden enjoy nature and the echoing chorus of bird song that can be heard across the land without the interruption of traffic, it is beautiful and calming. Connection with nature really does improve the mood and lift the spirits. Embrace it and soak it up.
Find a routine
One of the many problems that I think most people are facing right now is boredom and a lack of structure in their lives. What everybody needs at the moment, to keep their mind straight and back on track, is a simple routine. Everybody is in the same boat but the little things, such as making lists or timetables of what you’re going to do on a particular day, can make all the difference.
Making lists can also help organise your life. On your lists include showering and eating, so you’re literally including everything that you do in a day. Once you’ve ticked off an activity that is completed, you’ll instantly feel better. It’s the perfect stress relief. The next part is, of course, sticking to it.
Try to maintain a healthy lifestyle
This is a lot harder to do at the moment considering the circumstances, especially when fridges and cupboards are all within touching distance. But remember to ask yourself are you really hungry or just bored?
But if there is one thing you can take from this, it should be that you do not need to go to the gym to stay fit and healthy. There are so many options to choose from. At the moment, YouTube and Instagram tutorials are very popular, and they are easy to follow. People of all ages are getting involved and showing us that anybody can be tech savvy if they put their mind to it. But if you are a bit more traditional and prefer to be back yard exerciser or still go for your daily run or walk then that’s perfectly okay too. These are just as effective.
Speaking of running and walking, who remembers the outdoors? It’s the place with the grass and trees. It seems like years ago when we were allowed to go outside in groups and meet others. It sure takes a lot of getting used to. But the most important thing to remember is to exercise to help us remain sane. When you exercise, it produces endorphins which makes us happy.
Now, this next one might seem a little bit obvious, but drink lots of water. We often, especially now, may be drinking tea and coffee all day without even realising. Drinking water can lift mood and also keep you hydrated.
Do what makes you happy
Going back to what I previously said, it is so important to do things that make you happy. It can be absolutely anything and that’s the best part about it. For me it will always be listening to music. A good suggestion would be thinking back to a time when you were happy. That is why I love listening to music from my childhood. I don’t mean nursery rhymes or anything like that, but the pop music that I grew up with. You’ll be surprised, the nostalgia will definitely put a smile on your face.
Family is everything
Without your family you will have nothing and it’s very important that you always remember that. These are the people that love you, no matter what. It may seem like the world is out to get you at the moment but this is not going to last forever. It is completely normal to feel down or worried and chances are your family and friends are feeling the same as you. The simple act of talking can keep you from not going insane. There are so many ways to keep in contact from Facetime, to Skype, to House Party. So get downloading those apps. We just all need to support each other through this. I don’t want to quote High School Musical, actually I do, but it’s true, we’re all in this together.
Words: Tonicha Luffman