How to stay calm during Covid-19
As the entire world bunkers down and stays in… it’s a strange and unsettling time. Yet in saying that its also a time of incredible global connectedness. While everyone and everything is on hold .. its something we are all doing together. And so during an ‘unprecedentedly stressful’ time like right now … it’s even more crucial to focus on inner calm and inner strength for mind and body. It’s the time to get creative and innovate about mental wellbeing and looking after yourself. If ever there was the right time to SELF CARE it is well and truly now.
Here are some tips to help you stay calm and find an calm mindset during COVID-19 global crisis …
Create a new … yet ‘flexible’ routine
Creating a new normality for yourself is very important. But don’t be too stringent on what this routine looks like – have 5 key elements to your routine. Often when we experience incredible changes and uncertainty it can really tip us over the edge. And that’s exactly what we are going through right now. So we need create a new but flexible routine for ourselves, to feel like there is normality or structure to your day.
I stress flexible because each and every day the news and the government changes what is happening, so focus on a routine of things you can be in charge of.
Eg. Top 5 flexible routine essentials
- 1 Getting dressed,
- 2 have a healthy breakfast,
- 3 connecting with a loved one
- Write one positive affirmation
- Do some kind of exercise for the day
Create a virtual mindset
Think digital in how you connect right now. But most importantly connect with others. If you previously went to the gym on the way to work. Still to do that. It’s just the gym might be in the kitchen or backyard right now. If you met friends for drinks after work – think creatively have that drink but it’s just in separate houses and via facetime or whatsapp.
Had a dinner date planned with friends – get on houseparty app and still do that dinner date. Send pictures via whatsapp or marco polo… everything you would normally do in your day try still do just digitally.
Many art galleries are opening up virtually. So you can still see and do things just remotely.
Get Creative for your exercise
For many of us exercise is a crucial de-stresser so build that into your day at home. Create your home workout routine, there are so many apps which have online routines. Many gyms are offering their classes virtually as well. You could buddy up with a friend and do your workouts together via facetime. So get your activewear on, keep working out (with or without a buddy) just do it virtually.
Work out what you do have control of in your life… and focus on those things. That will give you a sense of control in all this chaos. Take a moment right now to list 5 things you still have control over and make a plan for your new daily schedule.
Bring in daily mindfulness via our breath and breathing exercises is essential. Its how we ground and connect our mind and body. First thing for the day is great routine as it will help you set your mindset for the day. The breathe is an incredible source of energy to calm and nourish our entire body. The simple act of focussing on our breathe is not only meditative it is restorative. Deep breathing is powerful, it ignites our body and mind at a fundamental level. It stimulates the vagus nerve which is one of the longest and most important nerves in the body connecting your brain to your gut, stimulating it affects your mood, stress levels, digestion, heart rate and immune response. Activating the vagus nerve works wonders.
Deep breathing can literally tell our mind and body to calm down…. And that no there isn’t a tiger about to eat you.
The Mindology app (www.mindology.app) has a session called BREATHE in the meditation section, it a 4 minute breathing session so easy to fit into your day, and will help calm and focus your mind.
A daily affirmation is great way to create a more positive mindset. Great to do first thing also as you wake each morning, as you are waking up – your mind is still sleepy so very receptive to positive statements. Make a statement to yourself like
“I am calm… I find calmness throughout my day, whatever the day may bring I find joy and positivity today. I am at one with all that is around me, I am part of my community we are all together united.”
You can also take it a step further and add in some gratitude statements, such as
I am grateful for my home, my friends, my body, the water I drink, the sunshine, the air, the birds that are singing, the wind on my face…
Get creative and just think of as many things as you can that you are grateful for – small thoughts such as thinking of how the birds are singing leads to a feeling of positivity and hope and that’s what will help us keep calm and build resilience for our mindset.
Affirmations and gratitude statements are powerful for your mindset.
Laughing triggers happy chemicals for your body, it releases the super chemical called endorphins, it helps to create a positive mood for yourself and decreases stress. So tune into the comedy channel – Seinfield, Friends, Celeste Barber … whatever show works for you. Take your mind off the negative news which seems to be bombarding our feeds. Get the popcorn out and have a good old belly laugh.
The ENTIRE WORLD .. from Tom Hanks, Bill Gates to the Queen, everyone has been affected by this virus. It has been an incredible leveller in seeing how we are all equal and connected.
Be patient, take each day as it comes. Focus on the day at hand, and plan to take each day as it comes. Focus on small steps and small actions during the day.
If you have children and are home schooling… Be kind on yourself as a parent. This time is going to define your kids in terms of stress and uncertainty .. not necessarily there maths results. So do the best you can. Keep as much normality as you. Bring them in on your meditation and mindfuless sessions.
Mindology has a section for kids- a calming and relaxation session to do with your little ones. You don’t need to be too graphic on details with your children, focus on re-assuring them, be honest in answering questions, start the day with gratitude and positive affirmations as they always are reassuring for children.
This is a point in time that is going to change the world and how we function. It has been a long time coming. But right now we are moving into a more caring, considered way of being. And that is a positive and good thing.
Look after your mindset and breath.
Claire Aristides is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, founder and creator of Mindology App an app to calm and empower the mindset available on apple and android.