How to manage stress during lockdown

How to manage stress during lockdown

Time to take control

It’s ok to be a little more stressed at the moment, life has changed and we need to adapt to those changes. Uncertainty is a big contributing factor to your increased stress. Instead of letting it take control of you, focus on what you CAN control rather than what you can’t. It’s not about NEVER being stressed, the stress response is important but there needs to be a balance. The more you practice managing stress the better you will cope in stressful situations.

Stay busy
Create distractions so you don’t think about the worst case scenarios all the time, the majority of our stress is built up in our own heads so it’s good to get out once in a while. There are many ways to create positive distractions, here are just a few;

  • Reading – catch up on that book you always wanted to read.
  • Learning – this is a great time to learn something new, take up a new instrument, solve puzzles, practice new skills (handstands).
  • Chores – do some work around the house that you’ve meaning to do for a while. This may not be very appealing but it’s better than thinking about the Apocalypse (it’s ok this is not going to happen).
  • New hobbies – take up a new hobbie such as, growing veges, arts and crafts, music, dance.

Establish a routine
Take control of your day. Create new positive habits through out your day i.e. set regular eating times, book in time to workout, make sure you have some downtime. Your daily routine is something you CAN control, this even includes those who are still working, work is just apart of your routine.

Mindfulness
Meditation is the most common for of mindfulness. Headspace is a wonderful app, there are many others, just choose one and follow a course. If you don’t like mediatation because you can’t focus and think too much I encourage you to stick it out because you need it the most. Meditation is not about sitting stills is about learning to be comfortable with your thoughts, letting your thoughts come in, don’t fight them, acknowledge them and then let them go (without force). It helps you focus on your breathing which is the absolute minimum to human survival so it how a very powerful effect on the body. It also gives you something to focus on while your meditating. Just like training, it takes time to get used to it. So give it another go and try it for at least 2 weeks. If you don’t like it after that move on to another method.

These are strange old times but it’s important to recognise that it truly could be way worse (WWI and WWII), so if you feel like it’s all a bit too much just think about how in another/place it is that much worse (frame of reference). Think about whats good in your life right now and make the most of it – take control!

 

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