2020 will be forever marked as a strange year. I mean for most of us it started out pretty normally. We made the usual new years’ resolutions, and among our goals for the year we may have even promised ourselves that to stay healthy we would eat better and live better. Then Coronavirus came around, and most of our plans went flying out of the window.
Year of the rat
In a time of illness, we all need to stay healthy. This is not just because our immune systems need to be in tip-top shape, but in such times of fear and uncertainty we need to work harder than usual to take good care of our mental health. And physical and mental health ultimately go very much hand-in-hand. So thinking healthy will also help you be healthy.
Don’t get me wrong, I know there’s a bunch of Joe Wicks out there among you (if you don’t know who he is take that as a cue to try out one of his YouTube workouts). But drinking from the poisonous cocktail of overeating, and limited physical exercise is not the only way that your general health can take a hit. You will easy to find yourself struggling between working from home and taking care of your family (or even fighting boredom and the onset of bad habits). Whatever it is that might make you feel you are losing your cool, we’d like to share with you some tips we think can be useful.
Be organised with your time
You might be one of those people who likes to play it by ear. Or maybe you are generally the organised type and like a strict routine. Whatever the case, have a schedule. This helps you to prevent yourself from wasting away when the apathy kicks in. There’s a good chance that an extended lockdown will push you to this point even if you think of yourself as unaffected by all of this. So plan ahead and avoid getting caught out.
It might sound disheartening. But to successfully take on positive behaviours you must plan, repeat and be consistent. This will lead you to greater success. When setting up your plan, try and give more importance to the positive and important activities. For instance, spend more time in the kitchen and prepare healthier meals. And try reduce the time you spend lying on the sofa.
Stick to the routine
We might be tempted to throw away our plans and move around our day impulsively. After all there is no boss breathing over our shoulder. And social pressures ease off without the daily interactions with others (social media apps don’t really count). I’ve known this temptation to afflict even the most organised folk out there. Try not to give-in to the impulse. And even if you find yourself digressing from your schedule try and find your way back time and again.
You might think that now you have a lot more alone time, or alone space than usual. While this may be true it does not mean that you are consciously taking in the minute details of your day and how they make you feel. Keep a diary, or take a moment every day and think about that one thing that stood out from your day. Maybe you had a meaningful conversation on Skype with a friend or family member. Or it could be a notable activity you did. Maybe you finished a particular task that has been on your to-do list for months. Find those moments that count. This helps you mark time more carefully and it will help you feel a sense of purpose, even in the little things you do.
Keep your goals in-check
There’s a lot of stress out there. The national health systems are in crisis, and the economy is in crisis. Whether or you are directly affected, the general sense of impending doom is going to dampen your day. Now is no time to prove that you are a super-human. Be kind to yourself. Keep your goals modest and don’t rush through your to-do list. It’s going to be a long time until things are back to normal, so pace yourself (unless you are working on the COVID-19 vaccine in which case we kindly ask you to work as hard as you can 😉).
In the beginning I pointed to the fact that our physical health is intricately linked to our mental health. But of course the opposite is also true. Fight off your frustrations with daily exercise, and get those endorphins buzzing around your body. You might have your own gym equipment. But if not you can just as well follow some of those online exercise routines. And to the naysayers out there that think their home is too small to exercise: all you really need is a space the size of a yoga mat. Technically you don’t even need shoes to train indoors! Whatever exercise you chose the most important thing is: do it, and do it regularly.
Share, if you please!
We hope you find this article helpful or inspiring. If you did please share it! In the meantime here’s a thought; why not reach out to your clients or employers by sending them a promotional gift to brighten their day and help them achieve their health goals? In this page you’ll find some of our ideas. Contact us if you’d like a quote!