If we had foreseen 6 months ago that we would be social distancing, living and working from home, would you have made any lifestyle changes? Would you be any fitter or calmer than you are now? Probably not. It takes a seismic shift in our lifestyle to really analyse our behaviour and make some positive changes.
Coronavirus has forced us to minimise our activities. We can, however, look at this as gift of time, of introspection, of change. Whilst we are at home, it is the perfect opportunity to slow down, reassess and realign our life. We all get out of balance in certain areas of our day to day. Whether it’s excessive stress, lethargy, negative thinking, disconnection from others or a poor diet. Being at home now can allow us to really look inwards, to what is happening beneath the surface of all the “busi-ness”.
The first rule is to start to slow everything down. Move slower, eat slower, be more mindful of everything you are doing. When we are more present and mindful, it allows the chatter part of the brain to switch off and focus on the senses and the present moment. Try to prepare a meal mindfully, focussing on the minutiae of the detail. When are you eating, really taste every mouthful and chew slowly. You’ll soon notice the texture and flavour of food has improved!
Make the most of the time
If you used to commute, you now have more time! Make the most of this time, whether it’s 30 minutes or 2 hours, to do something productive and creative. Get more exercise, whether training online or walking the dog. Try to do this with minimal noise and disruption. Switch off the headphones if you are out walking and enjoy the fresh air and wildlife. Start to notice the little things, the plants changing daily in the garden, the coming and going of the birds outside. Become an observer of life.
We may be social distancing but don’t forget those immediately around you. Switch off technology and reconnect with them. Pull out those dusty board games, get the family together and just play. Remind yourself of those special family days when life was on hold with no deadlines, pickups or appointments.
Laughter is a powerful medicine, despite the dark times we are experiencing. Find something funny to watch and really laugh hard. It boosts our mood and endorphins and acts as a mini-workout.
Start a new cleansing routine. Yoga has many guides to cleansing the body to keep healthy and to declutter from the inside out. Look at your diet, minimise the fatty and starchy foods and fill up on vegetables and alkaline foods that help to keep the system in check. Anti-inflammatory foods such as fresh fruit and berries might be hard to find but frozen is just as good. Experiment with juicing to give our digestion a rest from eating fast and absentmindedly. Try to take time in your bathing routine too. Give yourself a scrub all over, take time to moisturise, enjoy the sensation of rubbing cream into your body. Think about nourishing yourself on all levels.
Fill up your mind with books, information and stories. Take the time to indulge in that full bookshelf, learn something new or re-read that classic book. Get creative, make or draw something or even use a mindful colouring book to focus on one thing at a time. It’s amazing how much it slows you down.
Try to see this time as an opportunity for personal change and growth. Maybe create a vision board for where you want to be in a years’ time. What will your life look like? Put pictures together and build it over time to really become a goal to manifest towards.
Finally, one of the most important activities is to remember to breathe mindfully. Start a meditation practice. This can seem like a scary concept but even regularly sitting for 3-5 minutes and observing your breath is a great practice to start. Apps such as Headspace and Calm provide tons of resources to help even the most resistant mind get into a quiet place. You will find your sleep improves, mood is boosted and mind chatter is quieter.
Believe that this difficult time will eventually be over. How will you look back on this period? With gratitude and acceptance of something that was beyond your control but gave you a chance to redirect your life and reconnect with lost relationships or just a total waste of time? The choice is yours.
Today’s blog was written by Lara Darby. Lara has been teaching yoga for the last 12 years. She completed her 500 hr Training with British Wheel of Yoga and has since gone on to train in Sadie Nardini’s Core-Strength Vinyasa Yoga 300hr TT, Shiva Rea Fluid Power TT 50hrs, BWY Pregnancy Yoga and is Yoga Alliance Children’s Yoga Certified. Lara is a busy, active, sporty wife and mum of three young boys and highly values her practice to keep her strong, calm and grounded. She has a passion to share this with others in the workplace and online. If you’d like Lara to deliver your yoga sessions (either on site or online) then get in touch!
Due to the Coronavirus Outbreak we are currently not providing our wellbeing services at events. However, we are committed to supporting companies throughout the UK to maintain and improve the health and wellbeing of their staff during this critical time. As a result, we are providing wellbeing services online. This includes Yoga classes, Desk Yoga workshops, Laughter Yoga classes and specific workshops to help you during this difficult time such as Working From Home (Successfully), Mindfulness for Resilience, and more! If you’d like to find out more about our online services, head to our sister company On Site Wellbeing Co or Contact Us.