Self-care, often ignored, is essential for your physical and mental health. What it means is to pay attention to your body and mind, understand what they need and making time to give them that. In times like these, this becomes even more important – the COVID-19 pandemic has lead to a massive increase in stress and anxiety levels. And while it may seem like you can’t possibly find the time for it — given you’re managing your home as well as work — it’ll be better for you in the long run. We spoke to Dr Nishtha Nirula, Counselling Psychologist, Fortis Healthcare and here are a few self-care tips she shared with us to stay mentally and physically fit during the lockdown:
1. Maintain a routine
You still need eight hours of good sleep, preferably at the same time as before the lockdown began, and you still need some daily exercise too. Your lifestyle can have a huge impact on your overall health – so don’t make drastic changes in it if you can help it.
2. Express gratitude
It’s very simple – take out a few minutes to look around you and appreciate the things you are grateful for. Do this regularly and it could help you feel more positive and optimistic, express your emotions better and even sleep more soundly.
3. Organize your mind
It’s not surprising for one to feel extremely scattered during such times of stress. But this isn’t healthy for your mind or your life – things will slip through the cracks and cause you even more stress. Manage a diary or a to-do list to jot down all your tasks and chores so you have everything in one place and plan your day more efficiently.
4. Stay connected
Loneliness is one of the biggest concerns of the lockdown. It can lead to many mental and even physical problems. Call up a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while and stay in touch with your family members – we need to be able to lean on each other for emotional support.
5. Take a break
Too much stress can make you feel easily irritated, which would bring you down and make you less productive eventually. A few regular breaks from your chores can help you hit refresh and come back to your tasks with a more positive approach. You can even try meditation or breathing exercises during these breaks to improve your mental health.