This post was sponsored by Fanola
As if the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic wasn’t bad enough. This situation is also quickly gearing up to one of the worst mental health crises in history. And even fewer people have access to therapy now in times of recession. Therefore, if you want to stay sane and get through this trial without compromising your mental health, you need to learn how to take care of it yourself.
Develop a healthy routine
The breaking of your routine is one of the main stressors that affect people now. It’s not only the need to stay at home that affects you. Everything is out of alignment with curfews, business lockdowns, changes in work hours, inability to stick to your regular activities, etc.
Developing a new routine will help you regain some stability and a sense of control over the situation.
However, you need to be mindful of what you include in that routine. Getting up in the morning and doing your remote work before watching Netflix for a few hours won’t do. If you want to maintain your mental health in times of crisis with limited mobility, your days should include:
- Mindfulness meditation
- Physical exercise
- Planned breaks during work hours
- Time for extracurricular activities (hobbies)
Simply put, your daily routine must be a mix of work and relaxation, with a good helping of meditation. This kind of schedule will allow you to reduce the level of general stress.
Most importantly, plan your daily schedule in a way that will allow you to stick to it even when you are back at work. This way, the stress of breaking it again should be easier to deal with.
During lockdowns, we got cut off from the gym, beauty salon, and any other type of self-pampering activity. For many people, a day at a spa or night in the cinema was a method of regular relaxation. Therefore, being deprived of them does not only remove your tool for dealing with stress. It adds another layer to your stress over the current situation.
Therefore, you need to do your best to give yourself that kind of pampering at home. In this case, it would be about details that you can indulge in every day. Your beauty, in particular, will require extra care because lockdowns affect skin and hair badly.
You can start with little things, such as investing in a moisturizing lotion with relaxing aroma oils and a conditioner that makes your hair shine. These are products that will provide immediate results. Therefore, they will help keep your stress levels lower.
Aside from this, let yourself have at least one afternoon a week for pampering. Spend it taking a bath and giving yourself an at-home facial. Listen to relaxing music or watch your favorite movie and just let yourself truly relax. This will be a good time to practice mindfulness so you can enjoy your time fully.
Start a new hobby or class
Learning something new is a good way to regain a sense of control. As the pandemic has thrown off your equilibrium, starting a new class or hobby can help ground you. Today you can do this easily by taking some online classes on Skillshare or Udemy. This can have the added benefit of helping you develop helpful skills. If your job was affected by the pandemic, this will be essential.
Also, you should know that the stress hormone (cortisol) levels naturally decrease when our brains are engaged. This means that learning new information is literally a way to reduce stress. The feeling of accomplishment that comes with completing a task or a lesson is caused by a release of endorphins. This is another reason why learning something new can help you feel good.
Get a pet
If you don’t have a pet yet, now is a good time to get one. If it’s not possible, try to find a different way to spend at least some time with animals regularly.
Research proves that petting animals help to reduce stress levels effectively. And now you need all the help you can get to keep that cortisol at bay.
If all else fails, even watching cute animal videos can help with this. But be sure to plan your time carefully so you don’t get lost in browsing the Web for adorable kitten images.