Taking Care of Yourself While Social Distancing

Abs - March 31, 2020

As the world continues to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, health officials are recommending social-distancing and self-quarantine practices to slow the spread of the disease. This means, for the foreseeable future, we’ll be spending a lot more time at home. Our daily routines will shift, we’ll be without the face-to-face social contact that helps keep us feeling connected and positive, and we’ll need to adjust to this new normal.

That’s why now, more than ever before, prioritizing emotional and mental health is so important. Luckily, there are so many things you can do at home to show yourself some love and boost positivity. Not only are these practices a great way to manage anxiety, but they can also help you stay healthy and give your days more structure.

To help you get started, we’ve rounded up some of the best self-care tips from professionals in the self-care and wellness field that you can start practicing today.

Be kind to yourself 

One of the best self-care tips you can follow right now is to be kind to yourself. While there is a lot you can’t control, you can, at the very least, pay attention to your feelings and practice self-compassion.

Try this: 
No one can figure all this out in one week. Give yourself a little grace and remember you are resilient! – Martha Rosado, Owner,  Anxiety Specialist Counseling Center

Even people who don’t usually struggle with anxiety are experiencing more worry and anxiety now. So, practice self-compassion and don’t be too hard on yourself if you’re experiencing more anxiety than usual. – Anxiety Canada

Limit information intake and screen time

While it’s important to remain informed, if you spend your entire day watching and thinking about the news, it creates a mindset of powerlessness and panic. Taking a break from it all can help reduce stress and give your mind room for positive thinking.

Try this: 
It’s important to put time limits on media exposure to avoid feeling overwhelmed. –  Kevin L. Gyoerkoe, Psy.D, The Anxiety and OCD Treatment Center

Set a timer on your phone and when it goes off walk away, play with your kids, take a walk outside, play a game, or do a guided meditation. The amount of information we are taking in right now can be overwhelming and counterproductive to making the best choices for ourselves. – Angela Saeger, Cedar Point Therapy

Create and stick to a daily routine 

With so much change, it’s crucial that you try to maintain your routine as best you can. Doing so can give your days more structure, purpose, and hopefully a bit of normalcy.

Try this:  
Schedule your exercise, work, and food at a specific time and it will give you a balanced day. – Yvonne Phillips, Feng Shui World

Your morning and bedtime routines are particularly important. Get your kids dressed, spend time on schoolwork, play, and connect with loved ones via technology (virtual dinner parties!). – NW Anxiety Institute

Reduce stress and anxiety with meditation and deep breathing 

For most people, anxiety levels are rising as the days go by. However, panicking and stressing provide no protection against this crisis. If anything, doing so makes you more vulnerable. The immune system can’t function at its highest potential when the mind is worrying.

Try this: 
Take care of your nervous system and reduce your anxiety with a practice such as the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) Tapping. EFT Tapping can support you so that your body is able to handle the electrical load of the huge amounts of stress we find ourselves in. I am also sharing a free EFT meditation that anyone can download and practice by themselves. – Damla Aktekin, Vibrational Healer, A Drop Of Om

Other than chocolate and wine, our self-care tip is to go to our website and press our “panic button.” Don’t worry–no one will show up at your door–it’s just a recording of us talking you through your anxiety. It’s anonymous and free so press away! – Abs & Mags, The Anxiety Sisters

Find a quiet place for a few minutes to focus on your breath to ground yourself and increase feelings of calm and relaxation. – Mindful Soul Center for Wellbeing

Several times a day, pause to do some conscious breathing. Relax, be very still, and then silently count out ten slow deep breaths. For that short period, focus your undivided attention on the passage and feel of your in-breath and your out-breath. – Morgan Dix, Cofounder, About Meditation & the One Mind Podcast

Deep breaths connect us to our whole selves, deliver much-needed oxygen to our cells, and keep us present. Aromatherapy with pure essential oils in addition to mindful breathing is a treat for our respiratory system and can lift the mood. – Amanda May-Fitzgerald, Owner, Wild at Heart

Don’t forget to stay active

Social distancing doesn’t mean you have to lounge around on the couch all day. Moving your body for 30 minutes a day is a great self-care practice to get endorphins flowing and boost energy.

Try this:  
Aerobic exercise and resistance training are my go-to activities to reduce anxiety levels. There are a ton of free high-quality home workouts on YouTube. One work out will improve your day greatly. – Salmon Ptasevich, Anxiety Social Net

You can practice self-care and boost alertness by waking up with a meditation or morning stretch. I’ve made it more enjoyable by misting our Wanderlust Room & Linen spray on the yoga mat before practice or around me before I begin a meditation. It’s calming essential oils of organic Lavender and Ylang Ylang. – Aba T. Gyepi-Garbrah, Aba Love Apothecary 

Use this time to make note of the positives in your life

As the world deals with uncertain times, it can be easy to look at this entire experience negatively. But what if you paused and decided to focus on the positives instead? What if you used this time to be grateful for all the good in your life?

Try this:
This is a great opportunity to slow down, be present and have gratitude for moments that we oftentimes take for granted, like taking a leisurely walk or having more time with kids, partners or pets. – Lori O’Mara, LCSW, CST, Cope Better Therapy

Evaluate opportunities for self-growth

All of this free time provides the perfect opportunity for introspection. Maybe for years, you’ve wanted to start meditating, or maybe you’ve always wanted to read more. No time is greater than the present to tackle some goals and make changes you’ve always wanted to.

Try this:
Think about what changes you are making that improve your well-being. How can you keep up those habits when the crisis passes? – New Dream

Use this time of rest as an opportunity to let go. Assess the life you’ve been living and what you would like to change. Start by looking within. How can you declutter your mind, body, AND spirit during this virus? What positive things can you add to your life to help you get through this? – Kristin Fehrman, Mindful In Style

Boost your immunity

Unfortunately, we don’t yet know how to fully prevent or manage the damage caused by the coronavirus. However, this doesn’t mean our efforts are completely hopeless. In addition to staying home, there are a number of simple self-care tips and practices you can incorporate to boost immunity and improve your health.

Try this: 
Sea salt baths are a great self-care tip to reduce stress and enhance immunity. They increase mineral levels and lower inflammation. I am also a huge fan of castor oil packs, placed directly on the abdomen or the liver because they pull toxins out of the body and can be done while laying down or relaxing. – Mindful Health

Don’t let the fear and panic get under your skin. Every time you worry or surf the net looking for the updates, your cortisol level (stress hormone) goes up, and stress is not your immunity’s best friend. – Zara Martirosyan, CEO & Founder, inKin Social Fitness Platform

Intervals in the shower between cold and warm temperatures. To boost your immune system do 1-minute warm followed by 15 seconds cold.- Dennis Simsek, The Anxiety Guy 

Remember – YOU ARE NOT ALONE

It’s vital to stay connected during this time. Practice this self-care tip by video chatting with your grandparents or having a virtual dinner party with your friends.

Try this: 
Social distancing does not mean social isolation. Isolation is highly risky behavior for anyone, especially given the anxiety and fear that has been embedded in the overall social reactivity. Creatively reframe the phrase self-quarantine to safe social connection. – Barry Philson, Ph.D., Barry Pilson Therapy

Realize we are all part of a community and we’re all in this together, from New York City to Sacramento (and everywhere in between). We’ll only come out stronger and more united in the end. Do things to help others in your community who may be in need, who may have difficulties helping themselves.

Try this: 
Some teenagers/young adults are seeing how they can help the elderly in their neighborhoods with grocery runs, etc.- Dr. Daniel Binus, MD, Beautiful Minds Medical 

 

Redfin does not provide medical advice
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Originally published by Redfin

6 thoughts on “Taking Care of Yourself While Social Distancing

  1. I am a patient of anxiety and have been getting frequent anxiety attacks throughout this season of the pandemic. I was searching all over the web for some tips that can help me get through this. thanks to your blog, I got a lot of help. I tried my hands at various suggested tips and thankfully I am feeling better day-by-day. Thanks for sharing these tips. They are really helpful.
    The way you have presented is so well, really impressed! Looking forward to new blogs.
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  2. We highly agree with all these tips. Trying to maintain your normal routine while being safe is key in respecting your own mental health through these difficult time.

  3. First of all, I would like to thank you for sharing such good things. Corona virus is a pandemic disease that does not have to be bothered, it has to be dealt with and one has to make a habit of living with it until it is cured. To avoid this, stay at home as much as possible, follow the social distance. To protect yourself and your family from this disease, the rule made by the government will have to be strictly followed.

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