Good morning! How are you? No, really, how are you? This is a very stressful time for EVERYONE, think about that for a minute, EVERYONE in the ENTIRE WORLD, is in the same boat so to speak. That in itself is a bit much to take in, much less the fact that we might be sheltering in place for another 30 days, so please tell me I am here to listen, how are you? How are you coping?
Lately, I am anxious, and restless and frankly all over the place from one hour to the next. I used to be a worrier, I would worry about everything. I would lay awake mulling over scenarios in my mind of different problems and things going on in my life. About 4 years ago I started taking intense hot yoga classes 5-7 days a week and since then I have not been anxious or a worrier. I replaced my worrying and fretting with deep breathing and calming techniques, until 10 days ago when life as I knew it ended.
I am not worried about sheltering in place, I love being home, however our house is for sale. We now have an offer and no where to go because the house we wanted has been sold. We are supposed to be sheltering in place and yet we need to travel to find a house. Traveling now is not opportune and buying a house sight unseen is not really the way I want to start anew.
Here are a few things I am doing to keep calm and stay sane:
I am sticking to my routine as much as possible. I get up at the same time I normally do, and even go to bed earlier than normal. Sleep is not only an escape from the news of the day but also very good for your immune system.
2. Exercise and Vitamin D.
Everyday I am out walking trying to get my 10,000 steps in. If it is raining I am walking laps around my house and walking up and down the stairs. If a 66 year old man in China can walk 328 miles over the last month in his tiny apartment I can get my steps walking around my house. The fresh air and vitamin D are goof for your mood and health.
I am calling friends and family. At least once a day I talk to someone and we are sharing books we are reading, recipes we are trying and cheering one another up. If I am talking to my sister we “walk” together around out neighborhood so that we can get our exercise and encourage one another at the same time.
From social media and the news, not all day but for most of the day, so that I am not overwhelmed or inundated with negative news or energy. I listen for a half hour in the morning and a half hour at night.
5. Making Plans.
Planning trips, hopefully for this summer, to see my parents and friends. Designing my container gardens, picking paint colors and other things for my future house. Just because life is on hold at this moment it doesn’t mean it is over.
6. Practicing gratitude.
I am blessed, I am healthy, have a great house, family, life, etc and I am focusing on the good things in life. Everyday I write a list of 5 things I am grateful for; it could be as simple as a podcast that lifted my spirits, an email from a friend, the birds chirping outside my window. Look for the little things that will bring you joy and help you through this challenging time.
I am taking a few online classes and practicing my photography.
I find it therapeutic to sort clothes, clean closets, wash floors, etc.
I love to bake but at this point in time I am trying not to gain a ton of weight while inside so I am experimenting with my cooking. Every few days I try a new recipe from one of my cookbook collection.
Every morning I start the day with a big cup of steaming hot chocolate which I drink while sitting in bed with my pups reading a chapter from a book, or perusing a magazine. I end the day the same way, except with a cup of tea. It is a great way to rejuvenate and wind down.
These are just a few of the things I am doing to stay sane, what are you doing? Are you adding or subtracting things from your routine? Are you making sure to get some fresh air? How are you relaxing?
Suicide and domestic violence are on the rise as we are confined to our homes. If you are feeling down or are in a bad situation reach out to friends, and family.
If you need help call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
National Domestic Hotline Advocates are available 24/7 at in more than 200 languages. All calls are free and confidential.
The coronavirus has dealt us all a blow, we have all suffered some disappointments and hardship, but I believe that if we stay the course and listen to the experts we will come out of this healthy and perhaps better than we were when we locked ourselves in our houses.
Take care, wash your hands, be well and safe.