Well-Being During Social Distancing: How to Boost Your Spirits During COVID-19
Social distancing is essential to stop the spread of COVID-19. However, humans are naturally social beings. Here are mental health tips for the era of social distancing.
The coronavirus crisis and the measures that followed from it reminded all of us that wellness and health are our biggest priorities. It has allowed us the time necessary to unplug from the daily grind and put what’s important into perspective.
As therapeutic as that might be, there are still the looming stressors like bills, bored children, and work! Plus, social distancing is a stressor in itself because human beings need social connections in order to feel happy and healthy 1. So, here are some tips to support your well-being in the era of social distancing.
Social Distancing and Well-Being Tips
To compensate for lack of socialization, you should turn to other feel-good activities in your home that will help you cope better. By improving your physical and mental state, you will come out of this crisis even healthier. It’s time to find whatever positives we can in such a negative situation. Here are just some of the things that you can do to improve your well-being during social distancing.
Stay In Touch With Your Social Circle
Social distancing means you won’t have the chance to hang out with your friends and family in person, but that’s definitely not a reason to lose contact altogether.
Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, our friends are just a couple of clicks away, no matter where they might be. Use tools or services such as Zoom, Skype, or House party to keep the hangouts going even in times of social distancing!
You can also look at this from a positive perspective in that you now have time to reconnect with some of the friends or colleagues you lost touch with 2. Check in with some of your old friends from high school or your hometown and enjoy a nostalgic trip down memory lane!
Even though it might seem like a cliché, working out really is the best recipe for well-being, even (and especially if) you’re stuck at home 3.
Next to the obvious physical benefits, exercise also provides you with benefits for your mental health. In this sense, exercise really is an all-around solution for building wellness of the body, mind, and spirit.
Here are just some of the benefits you can gain from exercising regularly:
- Decreased Feelings of Depression, Anxiety, and Stress
- Boost in Self-Esteem
- Improved Sleep Patterns
- Sharper Focus and Memory
- More Energy, Fewer Energy Crashes
- Higher Thresholds of Resilience (Mentally and Physically)
Just like exercise, regular meditation practice has scientifically-proven benefits for the body and mind.
Even short periods of focused meditation drastically reduce stress levels over time, promote better breathing habits, and prevent over-thinking or negative self-talk 4.
If you have never practiced meditation, sitting alone with your thoughts might seem weird…even scary!
So, if you’re a total beginner, the best way to start is with guided meditation, where you will focus on someone’s voice and words rather than your own thoughts.
A great option during social distancing times is also gratitude meditation. During these difficult times, we often focus on everything that we’re missing or lacking and often forget about the millions of little things that we are grateful for.
Before the pandemic, over one billion people suffered from a Vitamin D deficiency 5. This essential vitamin is a catalyst for many health functions, including your GI system. That’s why Vitamin D deficiency and IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) go hand-in-hand.
A meta-analysis about the importance of Vitamin D explained,
“Vitamin D3 deficiency can result in obesity, diabetes, hypertension, depression, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, osteoporosis and neuro-degenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease.”– Int J Health Sci (Qassim)
Since our body doesn’t synthesize Vitamin D, we must get it from the sun. If you’re working from home, take the laptop to the patio. Instead of watching Netflix, go for a walk with your dog in the woods. Put your feet in the grass and get gardening. All of these will improve your mental and physical health.
Delegate Your Tasks
At times like these, it’s tempting to throw yourself into work in order to distract yourself from the uncertainties of these times. For many people, social distancing and quarantine have imposed pressure on a need for higher productivity.
The majority of people who are in the digital industries believe that now is the perfect time to grow their business, while others try hard just to keep it afloat. Tasks that have been waiting to get done for years have finally come on the agenda.
While this may feel good and normal in the beginning, in the long run, you’ll just be adding another layer of stress and pressure to your psyche. If you have taken on, like many other people, extra tasks or projects during social distancing, you probably already feel the additional burden.
To relieve this stress (and have more time for self-care), you can delegate some of your work tasks to experts.
Consider using tools, such as:
- BestEssayEducation (college essays or reports)
- GrabMyEssay (professional writing, researching, and reporting)
- Fiverr (delegate your tasks to freelancers around the world)
These websites employ gig workers. They have specialists who get paid per job. So, you can find someone with extensive knowledge in your niche to help your business grow.
In times of uncertainty, instability, and stress, it’s tough to pinpoint exactly what we’re feeling. Usually, that’s because we’re feeling dozens of different things at the same time, and sorting through that whirlwind of emotions can be awfully confusing.
Journaling about your day or about what you’re feeling can help you with that process. When you take enough time to unwind, sit down, and do a slow-motion process of thinking, you’ll see that your life is much more organized and stable than you think.
Writing about things other than your emotions can also have a therapeutic effect. You’ll be able to shut out the thoughts that are bothering you throughout the day and take a mind-journey into another realm.
You can benefit from writing not only fiction but guidebooks or texts about something that you know. You don’t need to have publishing in mind per se, but focusing on what you know and do well will do wonders for your self-confidence and sense of motivation.
Even though it might seem nice to turn to carbs and sweets at this point, it’s definitely not something that professionals would recommend for the long run.
Eating clean will, on the other hand, give you loads of health benefits in the long term.
So, during social distancing, try to eat healthier and build healthy eating habits. If you haven’t eaten healthy before, now is the perfect time to start doing so because you’ll have more time for cooking and less eating out.
For those of you who need some recipes, we’ve got you covered! Browse some healthy gut recipes in your dashboard in your Ombre dashboard.
How To Improve Well-Being During Social Distancing
There are loads of activities you can focus on when you’re aiming to improve your well-being during social distancing. Spending quality time with family and friends is wonderful, but you shouldn’t focus on the fact that it’s not possible right now.
Rather, dedicate this time to exploring some of your other interests and hobbies. And remember, take it easy on yourself! This is not the time when you need to be extra-productive or hit every goal. Learn how to relax and accept the new reality.
- 1 Umberson, D., & Montez, J. K. (2010). Social relationships and health: a flashpoint for health policy. Journal of health and social behavior, 51 Suppl(Suppl), S54–S66. https://doi.org/10.1177/0022146510383501.
- 2 “Is Now the Time to Reconnect with an Old Friend?” UnityPoint Health, 20 Dec. 2018, www.unitypoint.org/article.aspx?id=48aec54c-94e1-4f90-9164-eb2e6ee337e0.
- 3 “The Mental Health Benefits of Exercise.” HelpGuide.org, 29 Apr. 2020, www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/the-mental-health-benefits-of-exercise.htm.
- 4 Mayo Clinic Staff. “A Beginner’s Guide to Meditation.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 22 Apr. 2020, www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/meditation/in-depth/meditation/art-20045858.