By now, we’ve gotten used to life indoors. Everywhere in the world, people have been encouraged to stay at home to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Some countries have even mandated home quarantine by law.
The greatness of the human spirit has been unleashed, and we’re all thriving, despite the circumstances.
But while we’re all in the comfort of our own homes, we do realize the importance physical health plays in our everyday lives, now more than ever. With establishments in Singapore closed, including fitness centers, we’re unable to visit the Muay Thai gym, the boxing gym, or the BJJ gym. We can’t participate in class the way we used to. So we’ve turned to home workouts, which are essential activities in these strange times.
Yet even though our physical health is crucial in quarantine, equally as important is our mental health. As much as we train our bodies to become lean and fit, we must also train our minds to ensure we have good mental health.
There are many ways we can ‘exercise’ and ‘condition’ our minds during this circuit breaker period, all of which should be fundamental in our daily routines. We’ve come up with a short list of ways to ensure great mental health, as we traverse through these unfamiliar times.
Today, Evolve Daily shares five ways to take care of your mind during home quarantine.
1) Exercise Does Wonders
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A healthy body equates to a healthy mind. Thus, getting good, consistent, daily exercise throughout this circuit breaker home quarantine period is very important for everyone.
No matter our age, young or old, we should all strive for at least 30 minutes of quality exercise, just to raise our heart rate once each day. It does wonders for not just your physical health, but also your mental health.
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Exercise releases endorphins — your body’s happy hormones that just puts you in a great mood. That’s why you always end up feeling great after a good workout.
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Meditation is an amazing practice that trains your mind to focus. It helps you clear the clutter that engulfs your consciousness, and allows you to redirect your thoughts in a positive manner. Meditation is a huge part of martial arts and should be practiced daily. Many people meditate to reduce stress levels and enhance their concentration.
Apart from this, there are a multitude of benefits that come from meditating consistently. Meditation promotes emotional health and wellness, enhances self-awareness, improves attention span, reduces age-related memory loss, and helps curb addictions. Meditation also places us in a serene state of mind, and helps us to think more clearly, which then allows us to make better decisions.
For beginners, you should meditate starting from 5-10 minutes a day. Sit or lie down comfortably, close your eyes, and just breathe naturally. Focus on how you inhale oxygen and the way your body moves with each breath. Clear your mind and try your best to think of nothing. This is a great start and the foundation of basic meditation.
3) Social interaction
Having good social interaction during quarantine, especially with friends and family, is great for your mental health. With quality conversations and ample social interaction online with the people we love, we can stay close, even when practicing social distancing.
Social interaction not only improves a person’s mental health, it also helps boost the immune system as well. It’s important because it teaches us how to communicate with each other in a positive way. It all comes down to fostering good personal relationships.
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Good relationships benefit mental health in many ways. Your family and friends can influence your mood and encourage a positive lifestyle. Conversely, the lack of social interaction can even lead to depression or anxiety. It can lead to a feeling of loneliness and isolation.
Catch up with each other and share stories of how you are dealing with the ‘new normal.’ Technologies like Facebook Messenger and Facetime allow us to keep in touch, while not being at risk of spreading COVID-19.
Technology has many uses, and the majority of people use it every day, especially in this circuit breaker period where some of us are fortunate enough to be able to work from home. But the overuse of technology can also lead to an increased risk of mental illness, causing anxiety and in some cases, sleep problems. That’s why we must strive to unplug every once in a while and experience life offline.
Unplugging doesn’t mean going completely off-grid, as we live in the digital age. But make it a point to control your social media and internet usage, so you don’t over-consume information. Too much of the internet each day can dampen your mood, and is certainly not good for your mental health.
By limiting our social media consumption, it can help us live in the present. It also gives us more time for self-reflection and meditation. Sometimes, it’s just a good thing for us to get away from the digital world and observe the world around us more clearly.
5) Well-balanced diet
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Last but not least, maintaining a well-balanced diet is amazing for your mental health. Research has often shown that there is a direct correlation between our diets and our physiological health. The choices we make with our food directly affects our mood and mental health.
People who observe a healthy, well-balanced diet are more likely to be happier and with less risk of depression and other mental health issues. Essential nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, folic acid, vitamin D, magnesium, and B vitamins all help to boost our immunity and improve our mood. These nutrients can be found in foods that make up a healthy diet.
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As a general rule, consume more fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, lean protein, and keep your sugar intake to a minimum. Eat food that you enjoy and that makes you happy, and don’t restrict yourself. But also strive to make good diet decisions.
Having a well-balanced diet with good eating habits is amazing for your body, as well as your mind.
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