The “new normal” has a catchy name, but it’s certainly hasn’t been an easy transition for the vast majority of society. Drastic changes in the daily routine can lead to mental anguish, from migraines and headaches to anxiety, stress, and depression. With stay-at-home orders due to COVID-19 not looking to go away anytime soon, many people are unable to partake in things that were their stress relievers before lockdown.
Gyms are closed, gathering places are shut down, and the list goes on… but luckily, adding some of these simple stress management tips to your “new normal” routine can help replace the old means of dealing with stress management, and help keep your anxiety levels at bay.
Stick to a Schedule
Changes in daily routines have been all but unavoidable for most people during COVID-19, and any changes in day-to-day activities cause stress. With coronavirus, most people have had to change almost every part of their daily routine, so creating a new one will help put the mind at ease. Even if you’re working from home, the daily routine of getting up, eating breakfast, and even getting dressed for work can make the new normal feel more like the old one. Friend and family time is also even more important than it has been in the past, and scheduling meetings and online hang-outs with loved ones should definitely still be part of your routine.
For people with the means of being outside while still being at home, activities like gardening and yardwork are great for their mental state. They both allow for some temporary detachment from the everchanging world and also serve as mental builders as they allow for a sense of accomplishment and creation. For gardening, the bonus is healthy food, which is also very important when it comes to stress management.
For those who need to leave the home to get outside, there are plenty of things to do while still practicing social distancing. Most state and national parks have re-opened, and exploration of these areas gives the psyche the much-needed “new experiences” that can be difficult to come by during lockdown, especially after all the Netflix shows have been finished.
Maintain a Positive Mind
It’s no secret that the coronavirus is a deadly pandemic, but rather than focusing on how to avoid the bad, focus on embracing the good. There is plenty to be learned about oneself during the lockdown, and even COVID has its silver linings. More time with family, reductions in emissions due to travel, and more “me” time are all things worth feeling good about during lockdown. Don’t completely avoid the news, but taking it in small doses will help with the positivity, as well.
Helping others is, by almost anyone’s account, a good thing to do for those who need help. As a bonus, it also is consistently shown in research that it also helps the mentality of the person doing the charitable work. If time is what you have, shopping for an elderly loved one or simply reconnecting with someone whom you know to be very secluded during these times is great for the mind.
If you have a certain skill like playing an instrument or making fantastic brownies, share a lesson with the world via a live stream and you may help way more people than you could imagine. The entertainment industry has all but halted, so if you have the ability to share some laughs or talents, do that!
Money, too, is, of course, something a lot of people need right now, so if you have the means to do so, helping feed youngsters or donating to help hospital workers or other charities providing coronavirus relief will make a difference for both the charity and your mentality, and it doesn’t take very much time!
Keep at It
Coronavirus, as it seems, isn’t going away quietly any time soon. Adapting and overcoming the obstacles that this new normal throws at you are much easier said than done, but if you’re already in a positive mindset when the next challenge arises, it is much easier to overcome it while maintaining that positive mindset.