It has been a while since many began working from home; what started out as interesting has now become a norm and perhaps causing some of us more distress while adapting to be away from our daily activities, friends, colleagues and for some, their families. While we can’t do anything about the external situations, we can manage our internal reactions. Here are some things you and I can do to keep grounded in the midst of uncertainly:
1. Keep to a regular routine; have a set time to sleep and wake up. Also carve out time for breaks in between. Having a regular routine keeps you focused and motivated.
2. When you wake up, take a moment before stepping out of bed to notice your surroundings. Begin your day gently and be fully present to your body.
Take note of at least three sounds around you – the sound of a bus / train, dogs barking, birds chirping etc.
Next, look around you and notice three different colors.
Lastly, feel your surroundings, the material of your pillow / blanket, the cool or warm air touching your skin, your body resting on the soft/hard mattress.
Noticing all these helps you to stay grounded.
3. When you are up, drink some warm water and continue to hydrate your body the whole day. Keep caffeine to a minimum.
4. Play some music and do some form of exercise or stretching at home if you are not able to go for walks or runs. Remember to take care, go slow and treat your body well.
5. If you do listen or watch the news, minimize the intake of information. Too much information can keep you distracted and distressed.
6. Ensure that you eat healthy meals; do incorporate fruits and vegetables to your diet. Lessen the sugary and salty snacks.
7. Take some time to sit still in the mornings and evenings. Start the day with gratitude and end the day with gratitude. For those who pray, keep the faith and the prayers.
8. Remember to breathe. Often times we get caught up with work or distractions, and we forget to breathe properly. When stress gets to you, remove yourself from the situation if possible, and take a few deep breaths.
9. If you sit for long hours for work, remember to stand and stretch for a while. Alternate between standing and sitting as you work, or set an alarm for every hour to stand and stretch. If you are able to move to another spot to work, that helps with the change of your surroundings and keeps you motivated.
10. Keep in touch with your family if they are away from you, friends or support groups virtually or by phone. Support goes both ways, and it does lift the spirits.
11. Lastly, rest well. It is important to keep a regular sleep schedule and rise up to the morning sun to keep a balance on our circadian rhythm in order to perform at our best during the day.
We can’t control the uncertainties out there, but we can surely take care of our mental, physical and emotional well-being. Staying grounded and calm raises your immunity as well as your resilience. Together, we will get through this.