A huge wave of change is spreading around the world, those who have not experienced this wave will no doubt feel its effects soon. People are becoming restricted in their geographical movements or to their homes. Life is now in constant radical change which may challenge our psychology, our emotions and our behaviours to the limit.
So, with all this going on here are some things to consider and actions to help your well-being through these times through to the other side.
Most people run programmes of distraction with strong feels of ‘I need to be doing something’. It all fits tightly into a routine with ridged habits and behaviours that start from when we wake until we go to bed. It’s the box we have created to live and if things fit in then we are okay and happy, but when things don’t go our way, our attitude switches to one of misery and unhelpful behaviours.
During these times be aware that our ‘boxes’ and coping mechanisms will get stretched and dented, which can create high levels of stress and anxiety
If you’re confined to the home, it can feel like a honeymoon period for the first two to three weeks, it’s like being on holiday. The daily Groundhog routine is less intensive, and it can feel a relief. However, around the three-week period our psychology can start to become unsettled. This can bring up our suppressed inner irritations, frustrations, fears and a bunch of other unresolved emotions. If you are confined in the home with others and all feeling like caged lions then the atmosphere and energy changes, relationships become stretched, behaviours become negative and people’s mental wellbeing can take a hammering.
During these times it may feel hopeless and so easy to go into unhelpful thinking, emotions and behaviours. This can particularly hit people whose character is one of ‘busyness’, must be in control and have ridge box boundaries and thinking. They really don’t like being out of control!
For all it’s about ‘letting go’ of things we have no control over, to ride the wave of uncertainty and have faith in our ability to persevere and come out of this stronger and better people.
Here are somethings you can do and consider, it’s not an exhaustive list so add to it from other sources, but ensure they are uplifting and create a positive effect or experience for everyone!
1. Good attitude, keep it strong - Maintain a good attitude and engage in things that uplift you. Watch or listen to 30/45 mins of uplifting humorous material (its important the humour is not derogatory, puts others down). Humour is a good coping mechanism so use it often, make light of situations and find the funny side of things. Encourage others in your home to do the same.
Be solution focused with everything. If you see things as shite that’s what your mindset will programme you to experience. If you are optimistic and see the good, then the life you experience will be better and easier. Remember, all this is only temporary, you may need to keep reminding yourself and others of this. - Stay positive and calm!
2. Exercise daily and get into a routine – yes for many the swear word! Its important you exercise, check online the exercises you can do at home like walking up and down the stairs, don’t sit down for too long.
If you have kinds this is even more important, a routine. Set times when you and the kids have ‘work time’, mealtimes and other time like play, fun, creative and exercise. The mind needs structure, meaning and purpose. Routine gives you that and when adhered to, will significantly reduce the possibly of boredom and mental challenges – Keep to routine and keep moving!
3. Check-in time – the same time daily, evening meals are good, all sit and chat about how each is feeling with everyone listening and supporting. This is not a whinging session at others in the home but an opportunity to express feelings, struggles and what help they need. All listen and only respond when the person has finished. This is also about feeling supported and being heard, a novelty for many people, and something that when practiced will enhance relationships and bring people closer.
Don’t get into a group whinge session about the situation of which you have no control over, keep things upbeat. If you are alone, schedule a check-in with a friend or in an online group of friends. Keep in touch with friends and chat, remember its not all about you, others may need you to listen to them too – It’s good to talk, give your love to people, listen!
4. Time away from technology - During these times it will be easy to spend even more time on your tech, your reliance on it will become an addiction and that may create an issue for you later down the line so set times when to access it. People are lost in their screens and this is a huge mental distraction. The more we are away from them the more of life we experience. This maybe one of the biggest things to adapt to as people are habitually tied to their tech, the phones, computers, ipads, voice activated devices, television and tech toys.
As you reduce the time spent on tech, the more you will interact with each other and the healthier the mind becomes. Discipline your mind on tech or it will be your master and you forever the slave. – Limit your tech time!
5. Time for you – Take time to learn about you, how you tick, your passions, loves and hearts desires. Go engage in your personal development, who are you really without all the stress and head noise! Get an understanding of your passions, things you love, your fears and things you are good at. Watch, read or listen to uplifting material. Open to your spirituality, become a seeker of what the ‘More of Life’ could mean. Read those books you have been promising yourself, you’ve got no excuse now! This experience may open you to explore a different direction in life. Be open to explore new possibilities in life, work with a mentor, coach, join an online course. Try yoga, meditation, things that quieten the mind - Go awaken to life, we are more than the mind tells us!
6. Do something new and creative – Do something creative or learn a new skill. Cook new dishes, learn a new game, go and play. Do something you have not done before or learn it so you can do it when the restrictions are lifted. You may be limited due to resources but do what you can with what you have. This is about being as practical and as creative as possible. You spend all your time in your head, do something with your hands. The kids find this easy, the adults struggle to play – Create, play and have fun, help others do the same!
7. Do the things on your ‘to do list’ – your list of things in the home, d.i.y., gardening, clean and organise things, write that book, paint that room, mend those shelves. Be willing to let go of the things you have not used or don’t need. Keep the home uncluttered and clean. It’s both for hygiene and maintaining a clear energy. A stagnant and poor energetic environment will affect those in the home, some more than others. – Sort the home to do list, get clear!
8. Fresh air – spend time in the garden, if not garden at a window and get fresh air. Good to have fresh air in the house, keep the energy moving. – Get fresh air into your lungs!
9. Who can you help or support - what kindness can you share to both those in and outside the home. Take the focus off you and look what help you can give others, help where you can, your positive words to others will uplift and help make a difference in other lives – Help others, kindness!
10. Keep informed but don’t obsess – With the news get what’s important and them switch it off. Do not let the media’s focus influence and control your mindset, it will if you keep watching or listening to it! Media constantly gives gloom that can negatively affect the mind and hit emotions. Also, don’t let those outside the home negativity rub off on you. It is a good time and excuse not to speak with them, peace in your time! – Take control of the information you experience!
11. Getting overwhelmed – if you find yourself getting more anxious or overwhelmed with the situation be honest and tell those around you and seek help from professionals. Coaches, mentors, psychotherapists, counsellors and online help numbers – ask for and get help!
12. Plan for the future – plan the things you want to do when all this is over but keep it flexible and keep revisiting it. Keep seeing the activities, the places and feel what it is going to be like. Make this uplifting and reflect on it often, especially when you feel a little low, uplift yourself. Things may not go back to the old normal, people will have changed, things may be different, attitudes and communities will be stronger – keep a positive outlook, all this will pass!