With each week that goes by, things are drastically changing as we try to flatten the curve of the coronavirus. Most people are working from home, businesses are creating new ways to provide for their customers, and mostly staying at home.
As you’re hunkered down in your home, practicing self-care is a great way to manage stress during these uncertain times. Whatever your go-to form of self-care is, you can create a self-care sanctuary within your home that helps you reduce anxiety, foster creativity, or build connections. Whether that’s creating a nook for at-home workouts or setting aside time to learn some new cooking skills in your kitchen, having an escape at home can help you adjust to a new normal. Check out these tips to help you create and make the most out of your self-care sanctuary.
1) Create a dedicated workout space
Exercising is a great way to relieve stress and a common form of self-care for many. Having a dedicated self-care sanctuary in your home for physical activity can make it easier and more motivating to get your body moving. Luckily, you can still order most, if not all, of the equipment you’ll need to make your home gym your own self-care sanctuary.
It’s important to maintain your fitness and stay healthy during this time, which is why you need to create structure and balance. Gym time is still gym time – adapt to the change in your environment, but not your routine. Light to moderate exercise at least three times a week helps boost your immune system.
Try re-purposing a spare room into a home gym. If you live in a smaller home, you may have to get creative and turn one of your larger areas into a multi-purpose room. One of the most important steps in keeping active at home is to set up your workout space. If you can’t have a dedicated space, then find a flex space that you can quickly set up, is easily accessible, and you enjoy being in (think speakers, posters, mirrors, or plants).
There’s now plenty of workout classes that can be done from the comfort of your own home with live-streamed classes, app workouts, and virtual training sessions. Set up a TV or a computer screen in a central part of the room so you can easily stream classes or follow along with an app workout.
Of course, one downfall to gyms being closed is the lack of equipment most people have in their homes. But this shouldn’t have to stop you from having an effective workout at home — look around and see what household items you can use as a substitute for weights.
2. Use your kitchen as a therapeutic escape
Cooking and baking are fun ways to help relieve stress. What better time than now to try out all of those recipes you’ve been saving from your fav social media pages, or to finally break out the mixer sitting in the back of your pantry? Try to steer clear of unrefined sugars and flours as they turn into sugar in the body. Instead, try substituting white sugar with honey, and white flours with whole wheat pastry flours.
To create a calming, self-care sanctuary within your kitchen, it’s important to keep it clean and free of clutter. Incorporate house plants, scented candles, and other decor that you love to create a peaceful atmosphere that keeps you inspired.
It’s easy to throw out your good eating habits, but try to use this as an opportunity to fine-tune your cooking skills. Instead of opting for quick and easy meals, you can now dedicate time to cooking wholesome meals. Since accessing fresh veggies can be hard right now, you can freeze giant bags of greens like kale and spinach, and using them to make green smoothies in the morning. Add your favorite protein powder and it won’t even feel like eating veggies!
Food sources of vitamin C are more effective at strengthening your immunity and overall health than supplements. Fruits and vegetables, like strawberries, also offer much more than just vitamin C; all of their micro-nutrients work together to help prevent and fight disease. Using this time to rest more, eat less, and opt for simple staple whole plant foods (such as legumes, starchy vegetables, and whole grains) is a great way to optimize and refresh your health.
If you’ve been looking for ways to entertain the whole family, use this time to dive into cooking together.
3. Create a space for relaxation and reflection
In the midst of the coronavirus, take this time to focus on yourself and your well-being. Spend time doing more of the things you love and find a balance between work and rest. Practice putting less pressure on yourself during this time. It’s okay to relax and slow down; this is, after all, an opportunity to let go. While we keep our distance from others physically, now is the perfect time for self-care, introspection, reflection, meditation, and doing the projects we’ve been too busy to get to. –
Try finding an area in your home that’s secluded so you can find peace and quiet. This is, after all, your space for “you time.” One simple way to make your self-care sanctuary feel relaxing is by adding plenty of pillows, blankets, and scented candles. Whether your idea of self-care is getting cozy and watching a show, meditating, reading a book, or something else — design your self-care sanctuary to best suit your needs. If you plan to create a reading nook, opt for a space that’s well-lit. If you’re going to use your space for meditation, try finding a clutter-free area and keep your essential oils nearby.
As you work from home, you can do mini-meditations throughout the day: breathe deeply, think of people I love, things that inspire me, or something I’m grateful for. This elevates my spirits and keeps fear at bay.
4. Got a backyard space? Find a self-care sanctuary within your backyard
This is a great time to spruce up your outdoor space into a relaxing oasis. Just a few simple changes can make all the difference, such as adding a few pieces of furniture, or stringing outdoor lights, you can even repurpose this space as an outdoor workout area.
Gardening can be very therapeutic and calming, and it’s a great way to get outdoors. Better yet, you don’t need a large space to start a garden, and can even do so without leaving your house. There’s plenty of ways to order everything you need online or from seeds in your kitchen.You could use this time to get outdoors and plant a garden with your family — try to include greens like lettuce, tomatoes and other daily greens you consume in your home
5. Create a digital ecosystem in your home to stay connected
Even though we’re hunkered down in our homes, continue to connect with others and spend quality time with those you’re sheltering with. Remember, social distancing doesn’t have to mean social isolation. And thanks to technology, there’s plenty of ways to feel connected even as you’re keeping your distance. We may all be physically distant from each other, but we’ve been handed a rare opportunity to connect with friends and family in new and creative ways. Reach out through technology, listen, ask questions, play games via Facetime, have happy hour with friends, or take an online fitness class to meet new faces.
From all of this, one thing is emerging stronger and re-discovered – You!