Are you stuck at home and running out of ideas on how to spend your time?
In this article, we will look at 9 different things that you can do in quarantine – and all of them are great for your mental and physical health! Embrace as many of these ideas as you want to, and keep yourself feeling positive during isolation.
Commit to a daily practice
There’s never been a better time to start committing to a daily yoga practice – and now there are far fewer excuses! With endless yoga classes being uploaded on YouTube and hosted in conference style on Zoom, you are sure to find a teacher that you love.
To feel the benefits of yoga on the body and the mind, it’s necessary to make your practice a regular one. When you start practicing every day, you’ll quickly notice the benefits that it’s having on your movement, flexibility, and general outlook.
The best part? It doesn’t have to be an hour! Sometimes even 15 – 20 minutes in the morning is enough to wake up the body and stretch out the tight spots.
You could incorporate meditation into your yoga routine, or practice them separately. And if you’re new to meditation, try following a guided class – you can find these on meditation apps as well as on YouTube.
Meditation teaches us to accept our thoughts and let them go in an attempt to still the mind – something that is especially important when living through the stress of Coronavirus.
If you find it particularly difficult to meditate and are not enjoying it, try starting with a different and less intense meditative activity. You could color, practice mindfulness when undertaking daily tasks, or even go for a walk. During walking meditation, focus only on your footsteps or what you can see around you – without judging it or thinking about it, just see it.
Spend time on yourself
Get lost in a new book, take a long bath, or create an at-home spa for yourself. These are all great distractions from being stuck inside your house and will make you feel so much better.
Try to spend at least 15 minutes per day outside – whether this is going for a walk or in your garden. Just sit and enjoy the sounds around you to hit refresh before heading back inside.
Embrace a new hobby
Maybe there’s something you’ve always wanted to do, like learn a new language or teach yourself how to knit. This time at home is perfect for embracing a new hobby, and there are so many free online classes to choose from.
Hobbies can reduce stress and improve your mental health. There are lots of different online social groups for people who partake in all sorts of hobbies, so you’ll even be able to socialize and maybe meet some new friends along the way!
Use what you’ve got to get active every day. The stairs, a skipping rope, and a bag full of books can be enough for a great workout. Even if you don’t feel like it, you’ll feel so much better afterward!
Try to get your heart rate up every day – this trains your system to get oxygen around your body and to your muscles more easily, as well as improving the health of your heart. Aim for half an hour every day – again, countless coaches are giving free online classes during this time! If you’ve got children, take part in their games and you’ll soon find that you’ve done your workout for the day.
Work on your breathing
Pranayama, or the practice of breath control, can have a positive impact on the nervous system – which controls some of the most important bodily functions. Pranayama can have both immediate and lasting effects on reducing stress and anxiety – something that we’re all in need of at the moment!
A quick guide to ‘alternate nostril breathing’:
- Take a deep inhale.
- Using the thumb of the right hand, block the right nostril and exhale through the left.
- Inhale through the left – keeping the right blocked.
- Release the right thumb and use the right ring finger to block the left nostril.
- Exhale through the right nostril.
- Inhale through the right nostril keeping the left blocked.
- Release the ring finger and use the thumb to block the right nostril.
- Exhale through the left nostril.
- Repeat for up to 5 minutes.
Get enough sleep
Being sleep deprived can make it harder for our bodies to fight infectious diseases. Aim for 8 hours of sleep every night, and try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. This will train your internal clock and make it easier to fall asleep at night and wake up in the morning.
If you need to nap during the day, try and keep it between 10-20 minutes – longer can interrupt our night time sleep rhythms.
Connect with people
Use the odd hours that everyone is now spending at home to phone someone you may not have spoken to for a while. Connecting with people is incredibly important during this time, and will allow you to share your stresses and fears for the situation with somebody that may be able to reassure you.
Limit your time online
Being at home 24/7 makes it even easier to get stuck in the social media wormhole. Try to limit your time on social media and do one of the above activities instead!
Scrolling through social media is both addictive and incredibly anxiety-inducing. Too much time spent on social media can also lower our self-esteem – set a limit on your phone for how much time you can spend on Facebook or Instagram, and don’t change it!
So get off of your phone and start working on yourself! Let’s come out of this feeling better than we did going into it.
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