Stress levels are high during the pandemic. This is not surprising because people worry and are even afraid. They do not sleep well. This leads to behavioral problems like eating too much and eating unhealthy food. It also creates lethargy and disinterest in physical activities. It can manifest various physical symptoms like headaches, body pains, poor digestion, and skin flare-ups. Many experience anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues.
By managing your stress levels, you can avoid or at least lessen the possibility of experiencing all these adverse side effects. There are many ways to handle stress.
One of the first things you will notice in a person under stress is how they look. There is a tendency to look haggard and unkempt. Some even disregard personal hygiene.
Observing good hygiene is essential in staving off Covid-19. Do not limit yourself to frequent washing of hands.
Take a bath not only after returning home from the outdoors. A daily full bath with a shampoo will make you feel and look fresh.
Dry and style your hair even if you are not leaving the house. Seeing yourself with disheveled hair can pull down your mood and keep you in a rut.
Brush your teeth after every meal. Having a clean taste in your mouth feels good. If your teeth are yellow, use teeth whitening gel or toothpaste. You will be happier when you smile at yourself in the mirror.
Keep your nails well-trimmed. If you prefer having them long, keep them clean. Dirt accumulates fast under long nails.
Take care of your skin. Keep it hydrated with a moisturizer that is suitable for your skin type. If you have acne, treat it with the right products. You can look these up online and order from there.
Practice proper hygiene and make yourself look good in the process. Pampering yourself will reduce stress.
Another proven stress buster is exercise. It improves general well-being and helps manage depression and anxiety.
Experts urge adults to do not less than two and a half hours of aerobic exercise with moderate intensity every week. They must also do not less than two days a week of exercise that strengthens all major muscle groups. More hours will be more beneficial.
Aerobic exercise can be as simple as walking or jogging outdoors. It is best to do this in an area with no other people. If there are a few, observe proper social distancing.
During a lockdown, you can walk in place at home or do indoor aerobics. Strength training is possible even without equipment. You can use your body weight. There are many instructional videos online.
Make sure that your exercise routine includes proper stretching before and after each session. You must warm up your muscles beforehand and cool them down afterward. This prevents injury.
Another health benefit of exercise is that it regulates sleep patterns. Getting enough sleep is crucial in maintaining a healthy immune system.
Getting fit also involves proper nutrition and hydration. Do not stock up and binge on junk food and alcohol. Keep only healthy food at home. Drink a lot of water to ensure that your body is cleansing itself of toxins.
After working hard on your workout, give yourself time to unwind.
Make your bath into something special. Use soaps and scrubs enhanced with essential oils. You can recreate the experience of a spa. Light some scented candles in your bathroom to complete the ambiance.
Take a break from reading bad news online and chill by listening to music you like. There are online sources that provide music with relaxing nature sounds. These include rain, ocean waves, rippling brooks, or bird calls.
You can go offline and read a book. You now have time to go through the unread books on your bookshelf. Nourish your mind.
You can also set aside time for introspection. Unburden your mind and emotions by writing in a private journal. You can try freewriting in your journal to jumpstart the flow of your subconscious. It can bring self-awareness and mental clarity.
A New Lifestyle
One of the good things that happened during the pandemic is that you have a longer time on your hands. Do not allow yourself to get bored. This is an opportunity to spend time on your health and well-being.
Self-care will lower your stress levels in this period of crisis. It will also strengthen your defenses against Covid-19 by shoring up your immune system.
Take time to take care of yourself. You will see the difference in how you are holding up against all these challenges.