We are in the midst of some uncertain and trying times, where remaining calm (let alone having energy for all the tasks facing us) is not an easy feat. Spending day in and day out at home with our families while dealing with a million other things can be incredibly stressful. Since every family member has their own unique way of dealing with stressful situations, it is important to stay connected through open communication. It is also important for us to maintain healthy activities that lessen the effects stress can have on our mental and physical wellbeing.
Some of the simplest practices make a world of difference in the way we cope with stress in our daily lives. Taking good care of yourself creates positive effects, not only for you but for other members of your family as well. Here are some simple practices you can employ to help keep you safe and sane during trying times.
- It is a proven fact that our bodies need water to function. Making sure that we drink at least 8 glasses of water a day is a good start to taking care of ourselves. Forgetting to eat will drain our energy. Trying our best to choose food that will nourish our bodies and sustain us.
- Spend a few minutes several times a day practicing deep breathing. Lying in a comfortable position is best. Place your hand on your abdomen, just below your ribs, while you breathe slowly and deeply. If practiced properly, you will feel calm and energized and your breathing will improve during normal activities as well.
- Keeping our bodies moving gives us energy as well. To get your body loosened up, you can stretch, preform yoga poses or put on some music and dance. You can even have a dance party with the whole family. Physical activities make our bodies and mind feel better.
- Most of us have morning routines at home and in the work place. We find comfort in the familiar and known. In times of uncertainty and transition, try to create new routines. Find a schedule that works for you and your family. With young children, visual schedules often help.
- Finding laughter in the smallest of ways will activate those endorphins that send positive signals to the brain. Watching sitcoms, home movies or looking through photo albums often provides us a much needed chance for a laugh.
- During these days, reach out to those that are in similar situation and encourage each other. Share ideas that are working at home for you! Lean on each other.
Our children are watching us; they see, hear and feel all that is happening. What they see and hear leaves longer impressions that what we tell them. We can be good role models in how to take care of ourselves.
Remember that negative actions, words and thoughts will create clouds of defeat and physically pull us down. We can control and create a positive atmosphere for our family with our words and deeds. Wear a smile, it will make a difference for everybody. When you experience thoughts that pull you down, try to substitute them with encouraging self-talk.
Life is nothing if not interesting, we never know what the day will bring until we live it. Hopefully we continue to learn day to day and apply those lessons to tomorrow.