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Self-care during a pandemic

4 May 2020 Wesley Mission news

wellbeingDuring challenging times we often neglect caring for ourselves.

But in such times, one of your top priorities should be nurturing our physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing.

Of course, we acknowledge that there are certain restrictions we currently face which impacts how we can manage our welfare. While being realistic about what we can and can’t achieve during this time, we should embrace some easy and effective self-care methods that can be implemented today.

Keep active

Like any other work day, sticking to a routine can make a world of difference. This includes regular sleeping, eating and personal care patterns.

Keeping your mind and body active (in ways other than working) should also be part of your routine. During a lockdown, we can try:

  • Home stretches
  • Walking around the block                                                             
  • Listening or dancing to music
  • Reading that book you’ve been meaning to finish or pick up                                                      
  • Learning something new (e.g. an instrument)
  • Playing cards or board games with people in your household                                                                
  • Rearranging your garden
  • Creating a photo album                                                                
  • Reorganising a room in your home.

Why not also try some breathing and muscle relaxation exercises throughout the day.

Switch off

An overload of information reported in the media can be overwhelming, especially during a pandemic or a global crisis. Even scrolling through social media can be quite disheartening, being reminded of all the usual activities we’re unable to freely pursue during a lockdown.

Make a conscious effort to switch off on a daily basis. Take a break from the news and tune out from all that’s happening around the world. Instead, try listening to some music or anything that doesn’t involve screen time – especially before bed. This can also help you wind down before getting some good night’s rest.

Practice mindfulness

Another way you can switch off from the media is to practice mindfulness. This can involve being aware of how you are feeling throughout the day and being conscious of your surroundings. Take a moment to focus on your senses and take in what you can see, smell, taste and hear. Try mindful eating during your next morning tea, lunch or afternoon tea break.

Some other mindfulness activities include:

Connect spiritually

It’s natural to feel a range of emotions during times of uncertainty. Bring a sense of peace and calm into your self-care routine by feeding your mind, spirit and soul through Wesley Mission’s online resources.

They include:

  • Tuning into daily devotionals by Wesley Mission CEO, the Rev Keith V Garner AM through his ‘Celebrating Faith’ series.
  • Listening to weekly podcasts from ‘Wesley Impact! Radio’, available on iTunes and Spotify.
  • Watching inspiring interviews with Christian leaders on ‘Wesley Impact! TV’, also available on YouTube.

Reach out for help

Whether it be connecting with a friend, a family member or even a colleague, self-care also includes reaching out for help.

Beyond Blue has launched a page dedicated to mental wellbeing during the coronavirus (COVID-19). They include:

A range of other support services are available and can be found on the R U OK? website.

For more information on self-care, Beyond Blue and Lifeline both share helpful tips on improving our mental health and wellbeing during self-isolation.