The coronavirus outbreak may mean you have had to make changes to your daily routine, which can feel unsettling.
A healthy routine is linked to good mental health, and while your day to day life may have been temporarily disrupted, now is a good opportunity to establish a new routine that works for you in the current environment.
Try incorporating some of these tips, put together by a Royal Marine veteran, into your day.
Rise and shine
Set an alarm and get out of bed when it goes off. Make your bed, move your body to some music that makes you happy or enjoy a cup of tea. Start your day positively and it will set you up for a more enjoyable and productive one.
Lying-in too often can impact negatively on your mood, feelings of self-worth and energy levels, so save an occasional lie-in as a treat that you really look forward to.
Make a fresh start
Shower, clean your teeth and get dressed, even if you aren’t able to head outside. Staying in your pyjamas all day can make you feel lethargic and demotivated, which can lead to negative thought patterns and a decline in your mental wellbeing.
Try picking out the next day’s clothes the night before, so that deciding what to wear doesn’t become a barrier to getting dressed.
Fuel your body
What we eat affects how we feel. Try to plan your meals as you normally would and eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. If it’s difficult at the moment to plan your usual shop, take this time as an opportunity to research some fresh meal plans.
A good hydration routine can be a game-changer, positively impacting how you feel and your productivity levels. Set yourself a daily target and use a marked water bottle to keep you on track with your water intake.
Take time to focus
It can feel tempting, when you have lots of time on your hands, to keep putting off daily tasks. By setting aside time for them, not only will you get them done, you’ll feel a sense of achievement when you do so. Hold yourself accountable by using a diary or creating a ‘to do’ list and ticking things off and you go.
Keeping active is one of the best things you can do to protect your mental health. If you normally attend a gym or sports club – or even if you don’t – take the opportunity now to create one at home. There are lots of free online resources that can help you to plan a workout that works for you. Why not get started by trying out our online yoga session.
Setting boundaries between the different areas of your life – whether they are related to work, family or downtime is important, and even more so when you are stuck for long periods of time under one roof.
It’s not always possible to use separate rooms for things such as work or family time, but at the very least, set yourself some rules to separate different activities in your mind. For example, when you’ve finished using your laptop, put it away and out of sight. Little acts like this can help you to switch off and enjoy your downtime more.
Don’t be afraid to change things up
A change of routine can have an impact on so many things, such as your sleep pattern, anxiety levels or productivity. If your routine isn’t working for you, tweak it until you start to feel more settled. The smallest of changes can have a massive impact and it’s your routine, so own it!