In light of the Coronavirus outbreak, we are reminding ourselves to take a moment to stop, breathe and do whatever you can to recover from stress. However worried you are about Covid-19, its difficult to avoid the headlines and as our lives become more disrupted and uncertain, it is more important than ever to create moments of calm in your day and focus on supporting your immune system and well-being in general.
Time to rest & recover
If you are following the social distancing guidelines, you will be being encouraged to stay at home as much as possible and avoid crowded places. As humans, we are social beings and the idea of having to deprive ourselves of connection and physical closeness can in itself create stress and anxiety for some of us.
While the idea of reducing social interaction to such an extent may sound isolating and frustrating, it is necessary during times like this, and we can turn the negativity and use it as a positive time to look after our personal mental health and well-being.
Make it your intention to use this time as an opportunity to allow yourself to stop, breathe, move and to recover from the accumulated stress and demands of the life we lead. Read the book you never get time to get to. Take long walks. Eat well. Spend this valuable time with loved ones, pets and most of all, with yourself.
Here are a few easy things that you can do with your time to recover from stress and support your well-being.
After a day in the office or if you are working from home, you may not be moving much, and likely not breathing very deeply. Gentle movement at the end of the day is incredibly beneficial in both stimulating and relaxing the body. With movement comes a deeper breath, and with a deeper breath comes a better intake of oxygen. Higher levels of oxygen within the body allow our internal organs to function more effectively, and so the body is both at once stimulated into being more efficient, as well as relaxed, the deeper breathing having a soothing effect on our central nervous system.
A gentle jog or a walk could make all the difference. Or if you are staying at home, you could try starting your day with a gentle yoga session or an online workout video from your living room. There is so much resource available to us online for varying levels of movement and fitness. If you need some direction on who to access online, we’d be happy to direct you. We would also be happy to set you up with a movement and yoga teacher for a one-to-one online session.
Moving for fitness, health and well-being doesn’t need to be a strenuous activity that leaves you feeling depleted of energy – the focus is, instead, on gentle movements to release stress and physical strain built-up during the working day and to nurture a deeper breath.
Turn off to tune in
The majority of work-related tasks nowadays depend on computers or screens of some kind. The colours and light from these screens are incredibly stimulating for the human brain. At the moment this can be particularly stimulating due to the regular influx of breaking news stories.
When you have finished working, make it a rule that you do not check work emails or sit at a computer (or similar) after a certain time. This not only reduces the stimuli to the brain, it also will free up time for engaging in other activities, be it cooking, reading, gardening, or, most importantly perhaps, spending time with your family and those whom you live with.
There can often be a pressure to continue ‘doing’ even when we are not working, such as keeping up with personal emails. It can be very easy to roll one day into the next, constantly working or achieving in some way or another. This is even more true when we work from home and don’t have a well-defined place of work.
Whilst it is not possible, nor necessarily advisable, to relinquish all such responsibilities, try to aim for at least two evenings in the working week set aside for downtime. It may be planning to make a specific meal, watching a film, practising yoga or simply being at home and enjoying time with those closest to you.
When we allow ourselves to slow down, the body and mind are able to recuperate, restore and rebalance. You may find that, on these quieter evenings, the quality of your sleep is improved, or simply that you wake up feeling less drained and with more cognitive energy to participate throughout the day.
Stop and breathe. Try this 3 minute guided meditation to help you.
Give yourself the space to recuperate. Be kind to yourself and allow moments of calm. We don’t know what lies ahead in the next few months so its important to lay the foundations now for a healthy mind and positive outlook.
Virtual hearing health services
If you are self-isolating, or practicing social distancing, but are still in need of hearing healthcare services, Cubex are making many of our audiology services available online. Read more about what we are doing here – and stay posted for updates as advice from Public Health England comes in.
Guided online meditation
If you are interested in setting up and receiving regular virtual guidance from our mindfulness and meditation teacher during this period, get in touch.