Staying Busy During This Time

Recently the government announced that the lockdown period was to be extended for a further three weeks. Whilst we understand that this is necessary for the safety and wellbeing of the general public, we also understand that social distancing may be frustrating for some of you! We have put together a list of (social distancing friendly) suggestions to help you preoccupy yourself during this time.



Exercise

It is well known that physical activity helps to improve your mood and help with anxiety. Although gyms are closed, there are still many ways to get that endorphin rush that comes from exercise. Right now home workouts are your best friend, and YouTube is filled with so many great videos that you can do from the comfort of your bedroom. From yoga to HIIT there is something for everyone, no matter how big or small your space is. If you want a gentler form of exercise – take advantage of the daily outdoor exercise allowance and go on a walk. If you have any green spaces around you this is even better as being around nature may help to still your mind and help you recharge after a long day.


IDEAS:

  • Home workout challenges (Youtube, Instagram Live)

  • Walk or Run

  • Cycling

  • Skipping


Nourish your social life

We know this phrase might seem a little bit crazy right now because how can you have a social life when you can’t leave your house! Luckily there are several ways to stay connected with friends and family during this time *cue Houseparty, Zoom and Facetime*. Some of you may be social distancing alone but feeling connected to people is important, more so right now. If you’re able, reach out to your friends and family; it may give you a different perspective and give you some extra support.


IDEAS:

  • Write down a list of all the people you want to contact that week and plan to call different people on different days, spreading over the course of the week

  • One-to-one calls or Group calls

  • Organise an online Games Night with friends


Self-care

The current situation is impacting everyone and we are all worried about our own health and that of our loved ones so it is completely normal to feel anxious during this time. Whenever you can, take some time out of your day or week to focus on yourself. Self care looks different for everyone but the overriding principles remains the same. It is any activity that you purposely do to take of your physical, emotional and mental wellbeing. One good way to practice self care is to do something therapeutic. As mentioned earlier, self-care is unique to each person so this may mean doing a face mask or practicing make up skills! Meditation and mindfulness is something a lot of people find calming and there are a lot of free apps that can make your mindfulness and meditation journey a lot easier. Another effective way to practice self care is to take care of something else. There are many on-line plant nurseries that are still open so you could invest in some plants and start an indoor garden; a great way to bring nature indoors. There are many things you can do to take of yourself and if you know that a particular activity makes you more relaxed, set time aside to do it.


IDEAS:

  • Set a designated self-care day

  • Schedule rest days

  • Restrict your use of social media e.g. limit your use to only certain hours of the day

  • Gardening

  • Read and set targets

  • Online Courses (Check out the FREE online courses offered by: Ivy League Open University


Try something new

We’ve all got something we’ve always wanted to do but never got round to it; that really interesting hobby you’ve always wanted to try but kept putting off. Now is the time to dust off those old ideas and bring them into fruition! Home baking is a great way to kill some time and there will always be a guaranteed reward at the end of it, the quality of which will of course depend on your baking skills, however! Social media is showing us that everyone has a top chef hiding inside of them, why not grab some bananas during your weekly food shop and whip up some banana bread!

Home improvement

For many people, a tidy space means a clear mind. Spring is in full force and so there is no better time to do some spring cleaning! Declutter your space – take a few things out of room that you don’t use regularly and donate it to charity. Start an arts and craft project and create some nifty handmade storage containers so you can store away some items! If you’re lucky enough to own your home, you could fix up that area of home you’ve always wanted to improve! Some examples include installing some shelves for photos or books, or even creating a makeshift home office space. Order your supplies from an online store and get it going.


Make it a Habit


  • Do something for the Soul e.g. meditate, mindfulness, read

  • Do something for the body e.g. exercise, yoga, workout

  • Do something for the brain e.g. study/academic work, an online course, puzzles, learn a new skill

  • Do something productive e.g. chores, organising, planning out the things you need to do

  • Do something for the heart e.g. call family/friends, hobbies, paint, bake, read, cook

  • Do something fun e.g. chill (e.g. Netflix, movies), social media, board games

  • Do something to wind down e.g. journal, express gratitude, sleep, pamper yourself

  • Spend time outside (if you can) e.g. read outside, work outside, workout

Source: Twitter - @plntbasedcutie

We all have free time on our hands, and a lot of us don’t know what to do with it. There are several ways to tackle this problem, and in the process improve our physical, emotional and mental well-being. Written by, Dr Ife Akano-Williams

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