Socially Depressed — DSM (Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

For children and adolescents, staying at home may not be so bad; they get to play more video games, read more books or indulge in whatever activity they always craved when they used to be in school. But I’m sure some adolescents are also feeling depressed as they cannot gather in their social cliques as frequently as they used to. There’s no doubt that social distancing is increasing the rate of depression worldwide.

via Socially Depressed — DSM (Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

A Healthy Approach To Stress — No Stress

Stress-Heartypsych

A Healthy Approach To Stress Different people get bothered for different reasons. A big sports game, an office presentation, deadlines at work, even other people and relationships — all these can cause us stress. This feeling of mild anxiety can cause different outcomes, even negative consequences. A student can fail his or her exam simply…

via A Healthy Approach To Stress — No Stress

The Lowball Technique

Handshake

THE LOWBALL TECHNIQUE was named after, and first studied in 1978 by the US social psychologist Robert Cialdini, who found it while he was being trained as a car salesman. A technique of persuasion, it refers to a technique to elicit and raise compliance. It is mostly employed in commercial dealings. The technique is often brought to use to persuade a prospective buyer to accept a request. The proposal is so appealing that the buyer accepts it. Then just before the offer is being finalized, the salesman will change the original offer and reveal the hidden-cost making the original proposal less appealing. But as, the buyer has already committed to the offer, he or she will feel compelled to accept the second offer as well.

Cialdini and other researchers did a field experiment where researchers at first tried to persuade students to agree to volunteer to serve as experimental participants; 56 per cent students agreed to participate in the study. They then told the volunteers that the study was scheduled for 7 a.m., and volunteers were given the opportunity to withdraw. However, none of them did, and 95 per cent of them actually turned up at the appointed time. On the other hand, when a control group were asked to participate and were told the unsocial timing of the experiment up front, only 24 per cent agreed to participate.

crocheting

If You are Feeling Stressed, Crocheting can be of Help

According to a recent study conducted by Dr Pippa Burns and Dr Rosemary Van Der Meer from Australia on a sample of over 8000 female crocheters aged between 41 and 60 years, crocheting can be of great help if you feel stressed or if you want to relax yourself. The purpose of the study was to find a link between crochet and well-being. In the survey conducted, most of the female subjects reported that they felt more creative, relaxed, as well as experienced a sense of accomplishment while crocheting.

The study also reported that the crocheting made the respondents feel more calm, happy, and more useful. It was also reported that there was significant improvement in reported scores for mood before and after crocheting. The study provides ample data which suggests that crocheting as a hobby offers positive benefits for personal well-being of majority of respondents who engage in crocheting to manage mental health issue, grief, chronic illness, and pain as well. As crocheting is comparatively low-cost, and a kind of activity which you can engage in anywhere at any time (portability factor of crocheting), and is quite easy to learn, it can provide similar benefits resulting from knitting. It seems that the respondents experienced the mental health benefits of crocheting as much as from the act itself—the sense of accomplishment of creating something—and they also experience a sense of community connection (online crochet communities). All this suggests that women who, on a regular basis, engage in crocheting as a hobby experience real positive mental health impact of the act.

The findings of the study are also in line with the findings of previous studies highlighting benefits of engaging in other types of crafts. In one such study knitting was found to benefit patients with eating disorders by lowering anxiety causing preoccupations about eating, weight, and shape control. In another study, cognitive benefits of crafts were highlighted among older adults, it was found that older adults who were experts in crafting activities had better spatial skills. Yet another study highlighted the advantages of quilting, in which participants found quilting to be a prolific use of time. Participants learned new skills while quilting; they also experienced enhanced concentration as it is a challenging task, while the colors used felt psychologically uplifting to the participants.

All these findings suggest that simple and low-cost hobbies like crocheting, quilting, or other crafting activities can have a positive impact on your mental health apart from producing beautiful outcomes.

Food for Thought: Water Your Dreams with Optimism — Julie de Rohan

“Be careful what you water your dreams with. Water them with worry and fear and you will produce weeds that choke the life from your dream. Water them with optimism and solutions and you will cultivate success. Always be on the lookout for ways to turn a problem into an opportunity for success. Always be on the lookout for ways to nurture your dream.”  – Lao Tzu

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Not Everything Is About Work — DSM (Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

With so much pressure placed on us by modern-day society to earn money and make something out of yourself, it can become very stressful rather quickly. Before the coronavirus hit, most people can attest to the fact that they were running around like chickens with no heads, back and forth from home to work. Now that things have drastically slowed down due to social distancing, it’s time to unwind and appreciate relaxation.

via Not Everything Is About Work — DSM (Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Post-lockdown

Life after Lockdown: Don’t Let Your Guard Down Just Yet

As countries begin easing out lockdown, we are entering a world of new normal. If you think your life is going to be just like it used to be before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country, you are probably mistaken. The researchers are trying hard to develop a safe and effective coronavirus vaccine as quickly as possible. But meanwhile, we need to be extra careful and be mentally, emotionally, and physically prepared to manage life amid coronavirus scare. This definitely entails drastic changes in our daily routines and habits, and at the same it requires some constant and continued efforts on our part as well. Here are a few things that we have to keep in mind as we now enter the post-lockdown phase. But before that let’s first remind ourselves that the purpose of lockdown, among other things, was to raise public-awareness about how grave the COVID-19 situation is. Therefore, even after the lockdown gets over, we cannot let our guard down just yet because the virus is still around.

hand-disinfectionFrequent reminders: As the lockdown ends, we are going back to our jobs and businesses. So we are now bound to spend more time outside our house, working, commuting, etc. As the activities become regular and part of our daily routine, complacency may set in leading to carelessness in following the health guidelines in all seriousness. We may no longer wash our hands as frequently as before or may overlook wearing mask or observing personal distancing while talking to our co-worker. This could increase our chances of exposure to the virus. Therefore, what we need is constant reminders. Placing sticky notes on your computer at work-place for reminding you of staying safe by wearing face-mask, gloves, or using sanitizer, can be of great help in this regard. Make sure that these reminders are conspicuous enough to grab your attention.

The office-management should place such reminders at various places in the office, such as on every table of the office canteen, inside and outside common restroom, at the entry and at each employee’s desk. You can also set wallpaper on your phone and computer to remind you of following the preventive measures set by the health department.

Herd-Behavior: Once you go out to work after lockdown, you are at risk of falling prey to a behavioural pitfall called herd-behavior, which could be more dangerous if you are surrounded by people who are a bit easy-going. Herd behaviour is a phenomenon where an individual’s thoughts and behaviors get aligned to what majority of the group thinks or behaves. Being aware of this phenomenon will help you stick to your beliefs and actions and maintain healthy behavior. Challenging herd behavior will require recognition of the phenomenon and being ready to stand out.

A new normal: Post-lockdown, you are going to enter a world of new normal where you have to greet your colleagues and seniors at work-place from a distance and without a handshake; you have to stop touching your face to avoid infection; and you have to limit socializing with your family and friends. All of these are easier said than done because these are habits that we have acquired over a long period of time and making a change in them requires a constant effort. However, until there is any cure for corona, we have no other way but to accustom ourselves to this new normal. During this phase, we might also have to add an activity or two, to our daily routine, such as taking a second bath as we come back home from office, before joining our family members. Remember all this will take time to become part of our daily repertoire, so a few slip-ups are bound to happen, which could add embarrassment to the self or bring quick judgement from others. Don’t let it affect you and cause anxiety. Remember! a habit takes on an average two months to form. So don’t let a few goof-ups derail you or demoralize you.

Don’t get offended: We also need to be more accepting of our friends and relatives who turn down our offer of a quick meet-up in order to maintain social distance. Don’t criticize them for being overly cautious. Remember! when your friend or a family member chooses to maintain distance from you, it is not just for his or her own safety, rather it shows the concern for your safety as much. So, next time when your office colleague wishes to sit on a table at some distance from yours for lunch, don’t get offended; rather appreciate and respect his wish to maintain social distancing. Don’t let this temporary phase affect your permanent and long-term relationships with your colleagues, friends, and family members.

Beware of the Health-Belief Model of Perceived Susceptibility: You also need to be aware of the health-belief model that prevents people from following a healthy lifestyle or giving up a risky health behavior (smoking, drinking, etc) even though a competing evidence is present, as they believe that they somehow are not at risk or it cannot happen to them. The same goes for coronavirus situation too. Therefore, don’t let this belief set in that you probably will not get COVID-19. You will have to constantly challenge this belief and remind yourself of this belief model.

Follow the Health-Belief Model of Perceived Severity: There is another health-belief model of perceived severity which suggests that individuals who perceive a given health problem as serious are more likely to engage in behaviors that prevent health problems from taking place. Accordingly, if you keep considering coronavirus a serious health condition, you will probably engage in behaviors that prevent it from occurring.

Don’t panic, take responsibility instead: Now that the lockdown is gradually being lifted in various parts of the world, the responsibility of fighting this pandemic lies with you. At present, you are the controller of the behavioral choices you make and it is up to you whether you choose to follow the government advisories or not. This is the time to show your real self. Take this responsibility with full determination and don’t panic. Believe that you have every control over the situation as long as you follow the guidelines. Having a sense of control will prevent undue worry, stress, and anxiety. Remember! post-lockdown, the control lies with you.

mental healthDon’t neglect: As we fight this deadly pandemic, we might be neglecting some other health conditions that warrant our equal attention. Psychological impact of COVID 19 alone requires a great deal of attention and need to be addressed as soon as possible. Anxiety, panic attacks, depression, risk of self-harm, and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are some of the common outcomes of any natural disaster, COVID-19 being no exception. Some of you might have postponed your regular visit to your physician at the cost of your physical well-being. Whatever may be the case, it is imperative that you seek professional help to deal with your psychological or physical issues in order to ensure that your mental and physical health doesn’t suffer amid this COVID -19 crisis.

couple holding hands

How to Maintain a Healthy Relationship with your Spouse During Coronavirus Lockdown

LockdownSince we all are under lockdown, we are spending a lot of time with our spouse. This can be a welcome change for some but for some it can be quite stressful too. There are plenty of data to suggest that divorce rates increase during natural disasters. On the other hand, these may also be times when a much stronger bond can be formed between a couple. Here are a few tips that can help you maintain a healthy relationship, especially during lockdown, and form an even stronger bond with your partner:

Share the load: Share the burden of domestic work and any other daily work as much as you can, and in whichever way you can. It will not only lower the physical burden of your spouse but it will also make him/her feel loved.

Spend gadget-free time: As we all are at home, we are spending too much time on gadgets, mobiles, tablets, TVs, etc. To maintain a healthy and sound relationship with your partner, it is important that both of you spend at least some quality time together without these gadgets around.

Communicate: During such difficult and stressful times, it becomes even more important that you keep communication open. Share your concerns and worries with each other. Communicating your worries and concerns with your spouse will not only make them feel wanted, but you may find a solution to them too. You may also find that many of your worries are not even valid.

Get alone time: This lockdown has caused major disturbances in our daily routines. We are getting very less or no time at all for ourselves. We are surrounded by our family members, all the time, which is not a bad thing though, but getting no alone time can also lead to stress. The stress, in turn, can cause sudden emotional outbursts which can spoil the harmony between the partners. So to maintain a healthy relationship, it is important that we spend some time with ourselves as well, by reading or listening to music of our own choice. It will help us stay energized and refreshed. Stay together but give each other some space as well.

Find common interests: Find things that are of interest to both of you. Maybe you both enjoy watching movies or you both love to cook. Find out things where you can work together as a team, play cards, solve puzzles, etc. Games not only help you stay mentally and physically active and healthy, but they also build team spirit. Find games that need collective efforts.

Appreciate: Appreciation is a way to convey to the other person that his or efforts are acknowledged and respected. During this COVID-19 situation, it is vital that you keep appreciating the efforts of your partner no matter how small they are. Thank your partner for doing laundry, preparing food, or going out to buy essentials with full conviction. Your appreciation will definitely increase their motivation.

Practice patience and compassion: This phase also requires that you maintain patience and show compassion toward your partner. Let go of his/her small mistakes and try to overlook such habits that you don’t like. Now is the time to be sensitive to the feelings of the other person. Be a little patient and take your partner’s perspective into consideration before reacting. Remember these are extraordinary circumstances, which require extraordinary efforts on our part.

Be creative: Find creative ideas to keep the love and affection alive in your relationship. Arrange a romantic candle-light dinner or a romantic movie date with your spouse at home. Bring in all the creativity that you can, to make your partner feel loved.

Think Positive in Self Regulation through Private Speech — Motivation

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Thinking positive will get you a long way in the world of today. Succeed to be happier and healthier with a positive attitude in self-regulation through private speech. Make better constructive decisions when you think positive before deciding on how to handle any situation. When people make…

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Pseudobulbar Affect

Arthur Fleck's uncontrollable laughterThose of you who have watched Joaquin Phoenix’s Oscar-winning performance in Joker, would agree that one of the most striking traits of Arthur Fleck’s character is his uncontrollable laughter. Although the movie never names the specific conditions Fleck is diagnosed with, his fits of laughter are likely based on a real disorder called pseudobulbar affect.

Pseudobulbar affect (PBA) or emotional incontinence is a condition characterized by episodes of uncontrollable laughing or crying or some other emotional displays. PBA may occur in people with neurologic disorder such as multiple sclerosis or brain injuries, or stroke. As the involuntary outbursts can last from seconds to several minutes at a time, PBA can feel extremely alienating for the person living with it. Patients may find themselves crying or laughing uncontrollably at something that is only moderately sad or funny, respectively. These laughing or crying periods not only land the patients up in uncomfortable situations, but are also exhausting and painful too. Severe symptoms of PBA can lead to embarrassment, social isolation, anxiety, and depression. The condition can be quite disruptive to the patient’s life but fortunately, it is treatable. As with any sharp shift in mood, the most important thing to do is consult a professional as soon as possible.

 

anxious woman

8 Anxiety Quotes

1. To hear the phrase “our only hope” always makes one anxious, because it means that if the only hope doesn’t work, there is nothing left.

Lemony Snicket

2. Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength—carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.

Corrie Ten Boom

3. If you want to conquer the anxiety of life, live in the moment, live in the breath.

Amit Ray

4. Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic.

Anais Nin

5. Anxiety’s like a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but it doesn’t get you very far.

Jodi Picoult

6. Man is not worried by real problems so much as by his imagined anxieties about real problems.

Epictetus

7. Do not let your difficulties fill you with anxiety, after all it is only in the darkest nights that stars shine more brightly.

Ali Ibn Abi Talib

8. Our anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strengths.

C. H. Spurgeon

Six Psychological Steps to Take in Corona

Source link: https://www.psychologytoday.com/intl/blog/get-out-your-mind/202004/six-psychological-steps-take-in-corona

Simple tools and techniques from Acceptance & Commitment Therapy

stairsThe Corona pandemic is putting us all in front of new challenges. There are economic challenges, because entire businesses can no longer operate, putting millions of people out of work. And there are health challenges – not only due to Corona itself, but because the pandemic strains the resources of our healthcare system, leading to the illness and death of people who otherwise would have received proper treatment.

And as if this wasn’t enough, we also face mental health challenges. Because of Corona, going outside is no longer “just going outside”. Instead, every trip to the supermarket is now a calculated risk, where we try to avoid contact with other people as much as possible. Meanwhile, we also need to make sure we do not accidentally touch our own face. Leaving the house thus means having to be constantly alert.

We not only fear getting infected ourselves, but that our loved ones get infected, and that we end up losing someone close to us. In fact, it is very realistic that we will experience some form of loss due to Corona, and it is important that we prepare ourselves for loss. The constant stress paired with the uncertainty of the future creates a harmful context, where psychological ailments thrive. For this reason, now more than before, we need to be attentive to our mental health. In the following, I’ve compiled six psychological steps you can do to effectively deal with the challenge of Corona. Let’s begin.

Step #1 Connect With Feelings

When we are entangled in difficult emotions like fear, sadness, or even panic, life becomes hard. Every little step becomes a chore, and our entire focus then revolves around stopping “bad” feelings. Meanwhile, we also stop doing things that would actually help us (e.g. like proper eating and exercise), and put our lives on hold.

In the middle of this pandemic, it’s important to not let our emotions run the show. This does not mean pushing bad emotions away – this has never worked well in my experience – but allowing ourselves to feel emotions, without having to act on them. Do not attempt to force “good” feelings, but try staying with your emotions in an open and compassionate manner. Hold them, like you would hold a small, anxious child. Be kind. Listen to your body. Then see if they actually contain information you can use in the next steps. For example, fear or sadness might be a good way to support connecting with others or taking steps to protect their safety.

#2 Connect With Focus

When the future is uncertain (as it is right now – more than before), our minds like to run wild. We imagine the wildest scenarios of what will happen, and how the pandemic is going to affect us. For instance, many people worry about supermarkets closing, and thus resorted to panic-buying products in bulk, like toilet paper, wine, and even condoms (yes, really). Incidentally, many of those same people are now realizing that this didn’t happen and some are even trying to get their purchases refunded (condoms, anyone?).

When your mind runs wild about all the ways of how things can go wrong, slow down and plant your feet in the now. Literally! Stand up, take a breath, and then notice your feet and how they hold you. Now that you are “grounded,” focus your attention here it matters. This is not about pushing unhelpful thoughts away. The thoughts are here, and that is alright. But instead of letting them take over, let unhelpful mental chatter pass, and focus on what is there to be done, here and now. There are many additional techniques for this, and they are worth checking out.

#3 Connect With Others

Social distancing is no fun. Due to Corona, we can no longer see our friends and families in the same way that we used to, which creates a big challenge. We are social animals after all, and the importance of physical touch for our well-being has been well documented. For the time being, we need to give up (or at least limit) touching others.

However, just because we limit contact, does not mean we need to give up connection. The New Zealand Minister of Health, Dr. David Clark, made an important distinction in a public address, where he emphasized the need for physical distancing, not social distancing. We need to maintain physical distance, while staying connected socially. Through the internet and telephones, we can do this more easily than ever before. Call your loved ones, make time to attend to them, while maintaining six feet of distance.

#4 Connect With Presence

It is astounding how much the world has changed over the past weeks and months. Just two months ago, everything still seemed like it has always been. And you might even find yourself longing for the days when you could mindlessly scratch your nose, and carelessly shake hands. Naturally this is no longer possible. And it is unclear how long this last, and how much longer we will need to continue to adapt to Corona.

Right now it’s easy to wander off with your mind – to romanticize the past, or to paint grim pictures of the future. And when you caught yourself wandering like this, make sure to gently guide yourself back. You are needed right here and right now. Life is happening right in front of you, and the better you can attend to your life right now, the better off you – and everyone you come in contact with – will be. Ground yourself in the presence, and gently guide yourself back whenever your mind has wandered off.

#5 Connect With Values

The Corona situation has forced us all to restructure our days. The morning coffee at McDonalds? No longer possible. The daily commute to work? Not a good idea with public transportation. In short, a big chunk of our lives is out of order, and many of our habits that once filled us with pleasure and meaning are suddenly no longer an option.

This creates a problem. Many people can no longer do what is truly important to them, and for some, it is like taking their purpose, their lifeblood. In this stressful time, it is crucial that we reconnect with our goals and values, and with whatever lies closest to our hearts. Again, there are many techniques to do this, my favorite you can find here.

#6 Connect With Action

Many people have now more free time than ever before, because they are working less, and spend less time visiting their friends and family. Naturally, this opens a big window to finally do the things we always wanted to do, but never quite found the time for. And yet, most people do not tackle their goals.

Instead, they resort to just functioning, going through the motions, and continue putting things off. There is no strict schedule that they would need to stick to, and no colleague or friend to hold them accountable. And so a day in pyjamas on the couch it is.

I get it. It’s hard. And this is exactly why we need to create accountability by choice and start taking action. Move towards your goals in tiny, small steps – bit by bit. This is not just about achieving a specific outcome, but merely taking steps with purpose can do wonders for our sense of competence and self-efficacy. Corona is posing a challenge to us all, and we can come out stronger than ever if we are willing to show up as whole human beings, connected to our feelings and to others, focused on the now and the possibilities it contains for values-based action, and then moving forward in a way that reflects who and how we want to be.

 

How to Stay Positive During Lockdown

The whole world is going through an extraordinary phase. The present COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdown is causing a great deal of uncertainty and doubt that might be ultimately affecting your mental health negatively. During this phase it becomes even more imperative to remain positive and take care of your mental health. Here are few ways in which you can stay positive during these trying times.

Limit your news intake: First of all you need to moderate your intake of news. There is no doubt that watching news seems to be the only way to stay updated regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. But, watching too much news can be overwhelming and can cause a good deal of stress. If you feel stressed and anxious after watching news, it’s a sign that you need to limit excessive news consumption. You can make a point to watch news only twice or thrice a day, to stay up-to-date. Moreover, it is important that you follow only authorised and reliable sources of information. It is important to stay alert but no reason to stay alarmed all the time.

Follow a routine: If you are working from home or have kids who are attending online classes, it becomes even more important that you follow a routine so that you get proper time for all the activities and don’t unnecessarily get overwhelmed with all the tasks and activities at hand. Moreover following a routine will make you feel more in control of the situation and it will help you normalize the not-so-normal circumstances that the whole world is going through. You can make a To-Do list to organize work or maintain a dairy or journal of the tasks to be completed. Allocate time to work, exercise, rest, etc judiciously.

You are not alone: Remember, that you are not alone in this, everyone is going through almost the same situation. The only difference is how everyone is responding to these circumstances and no single way can be considered perfect. Do what suits you best.

Exercise, eat healthy, and sleep well: It has become even more critical during this lockdown that you eat a healthy diet and exercise daily. As per health officials, a healthy adult is required to perform 2.5 hours of exercise per week. Exercise has been found to have various health benefits, like it helps maintain healthy cognitive functions, and helps reduce stress, anxiety, and depression by releasing feel-good hormones like endorphins. It is equally important to follow a healthy balanced diet. Avoid food that has too much fat and sugar content, avoid packed food that is filled with preservatives. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables regularly. Last but not the least, make sure you get 7-8 hours of sound sleep. Following a healthy balanced diet and exercising daily along with a sound sleep will boost your immunity and help you stay active.

Meditate: Meditation has been found to relieve stress and anxiety. It can also relieve depressive feelings. Just a few minutes spent on meditation can have a huge positive impact on you mental, physical and emotional health. Make it a point to spend few minutes daily on meditation. Find a quiet place where you can place a comfortable seat, make sure that the temperature of the room is neither too hot nor too cold, wear comfortable loose fitting clothes, and ensure the lighting of the room is not too bright. You can also add other elements like, a candle or aroma diffuser if you want. The purpose is to create a happy and comfortable space.

Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness refers to being present in the moment. Not thinking about the past or future, just being aware of the present moment non-judgementally. You can be mindful while cooking, eating, or even while sitting in your balcony. You can start practicing mindfulness by noticing things you can touch, see, and hear. Simply pause for a while and focus your attention on objects you can touch, see, and hear in your present environment. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. Notice how your body reacts to deep breathing. While eating or cooking, use all of your five senses to notice how the food looks, smells, tastes, and touches like. These are some of the ways you can be mindful while performing your regular activities.

Stay in touch with your family and friends: While we all are basically locked up in our homes, this does not mean that you cannot meet your family or friends virtually. Stay in touch with your family members and friends by calling them up or having a video chat. Don’t let the lockdown cause loneliness. Stay connected with people around you virtually. Man is a social animal, and therefore, keeping in touch with others is vital for your mental and emotional wellbeing.

woman wearing maskBreak the monotony: The lockdown has already put a halt on a lot of our usual activities. We all are confined to our houses, so it is natural to experience monotony in our day-to-day activities. It, therefore, becomes even more important that we do not let monotony set in. If you are spending a lot of time on Netflix or Facebook and still not feeling entertained much, or feeling rather bored, it’s time to take a break and do something else—read a book, take a walk indoor, talk with your kids or partner. You can also break the monotony by simply changing your bed-sheets, trying some new dishes, going through old family album, redecorating your house, or by organizing your forever messy wardrobe. Who said there’s a rule where you can’t dress up for home or you have to use your finest crockery only for guests. Arrange a candle light dinner for your partner or family members, dress up, use your finest crockery and have a restaurant like feel at home. You might have to compromise on food, but who cares. The point is to create memories and moments that you can cherish when the pandemic is over.

Gratitude: No matter how difficult the present situation seems, there is still plenty to be grateful for, if you look properly. When there are people who are struggling to survive in shelter homes, when people are barely getting enough to eat—in such times, if you are getting three meals a day, have roof over your head, and loved ones who care for you, you have enough to be grateful for. Think about it—on the one hand, there are frontline workers who are risking their lives to save others and on the other, there is you who can stay safe indoor. If you bring all this to your consciousness, you would definitely experience a sense of gratitude. The feeling of gratitude will, in turn, help you overcome all your stresses and worries resulting in contentment, which will bring to you peace and satisfaction.

Help your community: It has been proven that helping others makes one feel positive and capable. In whatever little ways you can, try to help your community, maybe by giving food or other essentials to the needy (while taking all the necessary precautions and maintaining a safe distance), by appreciating the healthcare and other frontline workers, or even by following the directions of the state government. You can also help you community by just being kind to each other. In these difficult times, everyone is going through a lot, so simple gesture of kindness can bring positivity not only into your life but also into the lives of others.

Don’t think about future, prepare for the future: As we all are going through this stressful phase, there must be many who are fearing possible layoff in the near future. Already a lot of companies have started downsizing their work force. This has led to a great deal of anxiety and stress among a lot of individuals. But worrying simply cannot help you in this time. Instead of thinking too much about the future, use this time to enhance your skill sets, so as to make yourself essential for your company. Enrol yourself in some online courses and take part in these courses with full dedication. Don’t consider work from home as a paid holiday, work with full dedication.

coronavirusBe gentle with yourself: Don’t forget to be kind and gentle with yourself as well. Remember, this is something which none of us has ever experienced before, so you must not blame yourselves for not being prepared enough. If you are not able to learn a new skill or cook fancy dinners for your family, or if you are not as productive as your usual self, there’s no need to be harsh on yourself. If you don’t feel like doing anything, that is fine too. Relax, take rest. Remember, the lockdown could also be a chance to refresh or take a break from the normal hustle and bustle of life. If you come out of this lockdown as more energized and refreshed, consider it a success and achievement. Also, stop comparing yourself with others. Every individual is different and will be responding to the situation differently, there’s no point comparing yourself with others. Spend more time with your family. If you feel anxious or depressed there’s no harm in reaching out for help. There must be some online counseling services provided in your community, reach out to them.