We’re dealing with many different challenges as we face a possible second wave, so let’s brace ourselves for what comes next!
The problems we’ve already faced have been tough! However, you can pat yourself on the back for what you’ve achieved. There’s a lot of debate about what seems to make to sense and what doesn’t. We’re not here to get into that debate, we’re just going to offer you some tips, to help you in your day to day life.
We know now we’re in this for the long haul, there’s no getting away from it, so how do we keep ourselves positive throughout these difficult times for ourselves and our families?
The frequent changes to the rules require us to alter our mindset and daily routines with each new announcement, and to put in place any number of alternative arrangements; for our work, the way we shop, the way we socialise, the way we take our children to school.
Let’s review coping strategies that help us respond in a fluid and adaptable way. We are constantly on our guard for the next local lockdown or indeed stricter, national measures. This can lead us to feeling stressed, anxious, upset, irritated or emotional.
What you’re feeling is completely normal and hundreds of thousands of us are experiencing the same emotions.
Given our many years’ experience of helping people through anxiety we want to help you understand what’s happening in your mind and give you some practical strategies to use on a daily basis that will help you feel in control.
Anxiety needn’t look like you’re sitting in a corner shaking – in fact that’s more likely to be fear than anxiety. When we feel anxious, we can get irritated very quickly, not pay attention to what somebody is saying, not feel able to concentrate very well, we can have delicate stomachs, feel on edge, not be able to fall asleep because of thoughts whirling around your mind or you could find yourself waking up and find it difficult to get back to sleep again.
You may find it hard to relax, hard to sit and read a book, you might not be able to follow a storyline when you’re watching TV, you may find yourself snapping at others. Again, all these things can show you when the mind is in a different place, it’s natural to feel anxious when things feel out of control.
Let’s break it down and really get back to basics. We fundamentally need 5 things: clean air, water, food, sleep and shelter. If we focus on these things primarily and how we can improve on them in our daily lives by making small changes then we will not only feel as if we are surviving but thriving.
Clean air – Throw your windows open, even if it’s chilly outside. Clean air will refresh the room, making you feel invigorated as it reduces the number of allergens in your home and will help anybody who has allergies.
Spend a couple of minutes breathing in the fresh air. We have talked about the benefits of breathing exercises many times before, but it is a quick and easy way of learning to relax and one that we advise many of our clients to do.
Click here for more information: https://www.facebook.com/livelifenotstrife/posts/2752713634951953
Water – OK so not all of us enjoy drinking plain water, but let’s talk about increasing our hydration to help us feel enlivened and restore our bodies natural balance. Did you know our bodies are made up of at least 70% water? The Eatwell Guide says that we should drink 6-8 glasses of fluid a day – if you really don’t like drinking water, start by adding one glass of water a day, add sliced lemon or cucumber, mint whatever you like or if you can, buy a water filter. Then see if you can increase it! If you drink a lot of sugary drinks, consider swapping 50% per day to something without sugar. We can easily become addicted to sugar and it’s really not good for us! https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/water-drinks-nutrition/
Food – Do you get your 5 a day? Your answer might be does anyone? Did you know that optimum health requires you to eat 10 a day?
There are some easy ways you can up your quota by making some swaps into your daily life.
- A smoothie with breakfast.
- Mid-morning go for a piece of fruit or carrot sticks.
- A glass of fresh juice with lunch.
- Go for a meat-free dinner at least once a week, not only will you be increasing your vitamin intake; you’ll feel good in the knowledge that you are helping to reduce your carbon footprint! It can be quicker and easier than you might think – many ‘no-fuss easy vegetarian’ recipes are available for free on the internet. Or anyone can make a salad!
Sleep – The reality is that we might all benefit from more sleep. Many different factors affect our sleep patterns: shift work, noisy neighbours, stress/anxiety related issues. However, there are ways which you can improve your chances of sleeping well. These include creating a calm and quiet bedroom, evening routines, not drinking caffeine after lunch and not looking at a bright screen at least an hour before you go to bed which all aid a restful night’s sleep. This is what we call sleep hygiene. Click here for more information: https://www.facebook.com/livelifenotstrife/posts/2750585128498137 https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/healthy-sleep-tips
Shelter – Our homes are our sanctuary but when we have to be in them more often than not, you can start to feel as if you’re getting cabin-fever!
What can you do to give your home a little TLC which in turn will enrich your happiness and relaxation?
- De-cluttering can help to achieve a calmer environment. If you have too much ‘stuff’ around you it can cause you to feel stressed out without you realising. It may overwhelm your senses which leads you to feeling as if you can’t concentrate. Clear an area of your living room or bedroom, even if it’s solely clearing the coffee table! You will feel as if you can think more clearly, start today!
- Give everyone in the family their own tasks to help keep the house tidy, if everyone buys into helping each other out, it creates more family harmony and you will all feel more organised!
If your circumstances change, don’t put your head in the sand, go and see if you can get a mortgage holiday or if renting, find out what your rights are during this period. https://www.gov.uk/find-coronavirus-support
Many of us are lucky to have the lifestyles we do and although we may not have the extra leisure/social activities as we did previously. Let’s take stock and be thankful for what we have.
Being thankful is another way you can increase your level of happiness in easy steps. For instance, take a moment before you go to bed to think of 3 things you can be thankful for from your day: it could be that you enjoyed a healthy lunch, or you had a quick kick about with kids in the garden or simply that you got chance to listen to a podcast!
If you’re finding things difficult and would like to feel happier in your life, we can help.
Live Life Not Strife
We’re available for remote consultations, for a confidential chat on how we can help
you contact us on 01625 786026/+447980 667103 or email [email protected]
Tiny tips towards living a fuller happier life!