The last year has been awful for so many people, with millions dealing with grief, stress, financial difficulties, job losses and isolation caused by the pandemic. And with continuing lockdown restrictions in place across Australia, it's not always easy to stay positive or motivated as we’re faced with so much uncertainty. But in times like these, it's vital that we're all taking steps to look after our own mental and physical health, as well as keeping an eye out for loved ones.
Here are a few things that many of us can do to give ourselves a lift:
Create (& stick to!) a routine
A routine is crucial if you want to stay positive and motivated. Your morning and evening routine can affect your emotional wellbeing, energy levels and motivation. Whether you're working remotely or serving as a key worker, following a daily routine will help you to stay positive and distracted.
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Move your body
It is especially important to take care of ourselves in times like these. Fitness and endorphins work wonders for your mindset. It can help with everything from relieving stress to boosting mental clarity. When you exercise, your body releases feel-good endorphins, allowing your body to relieve tension, relax muscles, and boost your mood.
Now more than ever, the world is in need of deep connections and meaningful relationships - not just with a partner, but with friends, family, and loved ones. Forget the surface relationships, we’re here for the deep connections - the ones that set your soul on fire, that you genuinely and whole-heartedly feel safe in. Video calling is such a powerful tool in times like these. Use this time to check in with your loved ones and dive into conversations that will deepen your relationship.
Invest in yourself. None of us have time - we have to make time. We often put ourselves on the back burner while we put everyone else first, eventually this leads to us becoming burnt out and feeling completely defeated.
You need to make time for yourself every single day. Whether it’s a mini pamper sesh in the evening, taking time to read a book or have a power nap in the day, enjoying a walk outside or hitting the gym for a sweat session.
Practice breath work
If you follow me on Instagram, you know how much I swear by breath work. Honestly, it has been an absolute game-changer for me. Breath work is a great way to bring calm to your inner self - especially if you’ve been feeling tense, agitated, or overwhelmed lately. Our breath is an indicator of anxiety, mood and overall state of being. When we know how to work with our breath, we can change so much - our mood, panic attacks, insomnia, and even blood pressure. Enjoy a blissful release of the mind and body with Nicola Laye in a live breathwork session here.
Focus on the positives in your life
Gratitude is so powerful and it’s something I put into practice everyday using my Flourish & Fulfilled Gratitude Planner. Practicing gratitude reminds you of the beauty in the little things in life that you currently have. It helps you look at situations in a more positive light, build stronger relationships with people you love, and helps improve your mental and physical well-being.
RELATED ARTICLE: 5 Benefits Of Gratitude
Embrace all your emotions
We need to remind ourselves that it’s okay to experience negative emotions from time to time. We all have experienced them because they are a natural part of life. After all, without sadness, we wouldn’t know joy. I know that it’s hard to stay positive all the time but it’s so important to pay attention to your feelings, express them and be able to move forward.
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Reflect and connect with yourself
Self-reflection is the process of bringing your attention to what’s happening in your life in a mindful and open way. It’s about creating self-awareness and taking the time to understand what’s going on within us.
Self-reflection is one of the best ways to help shift your mindset. It’s so important for our mental health and wellbeing, and can increase positivity in our lives, as well as deepening the connection to yourself. It is a form of personal analysis that allows you to bring your life into alignment with what you wish it to be.
RELATED ARTICLE: The Importance Of Self-Reflection
Take time offline
We all need a break from technology now and again, even a small one can help your mind and body to relax and recharge. Putting away our addictive little devices can result in a range of benefits, such as feeling less stressed, getting better sleep, boosted energy levels, and more productivity.
RELATED ARTICLE: Digital Detox: How To Unplug When You Need A Break
Remember: When it comes to your mental wellbeing, there are a number of support options available to you during the coronavirus pandemic. Trained counsellors are available to talk to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on Beyond Blue’s dedicated coronavirus phone support line - Call 1800 512 348.