Creating Peace & Fostering Connection
It is not unusual to feel stress and anxiety during these uncertain times. Many of us have taken to social distancing—the conscious effort to reduce close contact between people—as a preventative measure recommended by the CDC to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
And while trying to stymie the spread of the virus in this way can feel rather isolating, as you settle into the calm of your home, here are some ways to help you create peace and foster connection. Please know, we REALLY are all in this together.
1.Enjoy quality alone time. Spend time cultivating your passions by doing the things you love without the distractions or opinions of others. Or, how about learning something new? Sign up for an online course, try a new recipe, pick up a hobby that has always interested you. When we take time to care for ourselves, we are better able to care for others. In this way, being alone actually benefits your relationships.
2.Do a Digital Detox. Now is as good a time as any to unplug the smartphones and computers to reduce the stress associated with always being plugged-in (and the constant barrage of news updates). Plus, if you have kids at home, limiting your technology usage sets a good example for your children. Using this time to reconnect with yourself (see #1) and your family can help you focus on the things that really matter in your life and allow you (all) to develop a healthier relationship with your devices. Curious about what to do during a digital detox? Read a book, listen to your old records, write letters to your friends, play board games, do arts and crafts, meditate, practice yoga, enjoy peace and quiet!
3.Be present. One way to stay calm and present in the face of adversity is to practice mindfulness and deep breathing. Mindfulness is learning to quiet your mind, tune into your senses and be present to what’s happening moment by moment rather than getting caught up in the storyline of your thoughts. When we practice controlled breathing and focus on our breath, we lower our heart rate, blood pressure and sharpen our ability to focus. Center yourself by maintaining regular mindfulness and breathing practices and this show of compassion towards yourself will translate to compassion for others.