What is happening to our lives during the recent global pandemic as we’ve isolated at home while pondering our health and dwindling finances? All in all, it can’t be good, UNLESS… Yes, unless we change our mindset.
If you have been caught up in the latest news reels of virus statistics, death, violence and protests, then you are no doubt feeling a bit depressed, sad and/or lonely. I am with you, friends! The required social distancing and mask wearing erodes our psychic and manifests in multiple side effects, not the least is stress, depression and loneliness. Just google ‘depression and pandemic’ and you will find 159,000,000 results in less than 30 seconds. WOW!
Depression is serious as it has the potential to negatively affect how we feel, what we think about, and how we handle daily activities–sleeping, eating, working. Symptoms include profound sadness, anxiety, irritability, guilt and pessimism.
Small change ~ BIG difference
As a Professional Organize / Personal Coach, I need to heed my own advice during this difficult time — just take it one small step at a time — one week at a time, one day at a time, one hour at a time, one moment at a time.
An important step towards making a BIG difference is keeping to a routine. This is not the time to lounge around in pj’s and drinking coffee until mid afternoon; this is the time to be conscientious of what we do and when we do it. This is not the time to lament about what we are losing or the gains we cannot make; it is the time to be grateful for what we have.
Some benefits of incorporating daily routines include eliminating stress, anxiety, and insomnia. If you are interested in transforming all aspects of your life, then set up quality routines. There is scientific evidence behind the connection of mental health and having routines. With firm habitual daily patterns, you know exactly what to expect and can better cope with the changes in your life that you are experiencing right now.
Here is a list of potential routines that will help you strive for positive and grateful thinking:
- Get up ~ Waking up and getting out of bed at the same time every day may seem inconsequential since you have the whole day to do whatever. Yet, getting up sets the stage for taking back control of your life.
- Get dressed ~ Just because you have no intentions of leaving the house or having visitors, doesn’t mean you should stay in sweats all day. Getting dressed every day will change your mindset and conscientiously be ready for whatever the day throws at you.
- Eating Right ~ Maybe your eating habits were established during childhood, or adopted due to work and time constraints, or simply convenience, but that doesn’t mean you can’t change them now. Healthy eating is fundamental to maintaining well-being. Every day should include a balance of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins along with getting plenty of fiber to keep you feeling satisfied. Everything about the day will be better.
- Exercise ~ Any movement that makes muscles work is a benefit to our bodies and minds. You were made to move, not to continually sit in front of a computer or TV. Exercise is good for muscles and bones; it is good for increased energy; it is good for maintaining weight; it is good for mental acuity.
- Sleep Better ~ Bedtime routines allow for better sleep patterns and a healthier body. It gives you time to decompress and mull over daily gratitudes. Keep the bedroom atmosphere calm and positive in order to set the stage for peacefully drifting into deep, relaxing, renewing sleep.
When times are tough, it’s especially important to keep structure in your life. Don’t forget to build in fun times, too. Set your goals, write out a to-do list for each day and make an appointment with yourself to achieve those things that will add value to your life and bring you happiness. Structure your time to enjoy your time!