Sunday, May 3, 2020

Maintaining Emotional Wellness During Covid-19

"The only way out is in" - Junot Diaz, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
"May I live this day compassionate of heart" - John O'Donohue, Matins

This experience of living in quarantine with all the uncertainty, loss and isolation is taxing on our bodies. Actively maintaining emotional wellness is a healthy way to cope with this crisis. The steps listed below are intended to be daily reminders of things we can all do to manage our emotional well-being. This includes making time for self-reflection, nurturing the body, connecting with others responsibly, and savoring moments of joy.

Self- Reflection - Daily Questions To Ask Yourself
What helps you?
What do you need?
What concerns you?
What scenario are you replaying in your mind? If it were to happen, what would you do?
What steps can you take today to lead you to a sense of satisfaction, achievement, and/or calm?
What in your life is going okay?
What are you feeling? Notice, allow, and name the emotions you are currently experiencing.
What are the physical sensations you notice in your body? heart racing, brain fog, dizziness, tightness in chest or belly, tingling, vibrations, pulsing, cold, nausea, muscle tension, etc.

Nurture The Body
Raise your heart rate with aerobic and strength exercises, stretch, maintain good posture, rest when you need to, maintain a regular sleep schedule, practice deep breathing and good nutrition.

Connect With Others 
Maintain and develop relationships with those you feel supported by. Practice safe relating, keeping 6’ of space between you and the other person. Schedule phone & video calls regularly. Offer support to a friend, neighbor, or family member. Participate in a volunteer or socialization group. Helping someone in need can be a rewarding endeavor.

Savor Moments Of Joy
Figure out what lifts you up—mind and body—and find a way to do it regularly.
Take in natural beauty whenever you can: look out your window, walk in nature, listen to the birds singing, etc. Laugh as much as you can.  Moments of lightness help us get through hardship and suffering. Prioritize activities that you enjoy. Some examples are painting, coloring, fishing, cooking, dancing, singing, reading, sewing, etc.

Our perceptions are greatly impacted by our mood. Capitalize on your energy and productivity bursts. Recognizing your regular motivation may not be the same. Maintaining emotional wellness is  an important resource for all of us.