Intentional living during the CoVid-19 Lockdown

Mindfulness and relaxation practices at home

During the national lockdown, we are faced with a lot of new feelings and challenges. Initially the idea of spending time at home might have been a wonderful prospect, but as the days go by, reality might be sinking in.

Feeling stir crazy between the walls of your home, children being demanding, and relationships being challenged with the lack of personal space.

Our Nurture health vision is to enable you to live a satisfying life, even during times of change. This means having balance in all the dimensions of wellness. Physically, emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, financially, socially, and environmentally.

Here are some guidelines to keep balance in your life using relaxation and mindfulness techniques in your home environment.

We are all aware of passive relaxation, this might have been your only approach up until now. Watching television, listening to music, lounging on the couch, or using social media as a distraction, but practicing active relaxation has some health and wellness benefits and will make you feel more productive and purposeful.

Try the following activities to stay active, yet relaxed, while confined to your home:

Read a book or listen to a podcast

Adult colouring (You can find many resources online)

Exercise videos on YouTube (Try Pilates or Yoga for beginners)

Going for a walk in your garden if possible

Keeping a journal

Getting creative (You can use recycled waste material to make something at home)

Make a vision board using magazines and paper

Bake or cook something delicious

Schedule time to worry instead of worrying subconsciously the whole day. Take 10 minutes, write down your concerns, acknowledge them and move on. 

Don’t focus too much on being productive, relaxation is about being present and enjoying the activity at hand, so make sure you schedule time for it in between your responsibilities and to do list.

Mindfulness is another technique you can try.

If you haven’t heard of it before, try reading up on it on the internet.

Mindfulness can be defined as a state of awareness and a state of seeking internal calm. This can be very helpful if you are feeling overwhelmed.

There are two types of mindfulness: informal and formal practices. You might have been practicing informal mindfulness without realizing it. Examples include listening to music or taking a long bath and using that time to reach a state of calm. Formal mindfulness is the practice of meditation.

Meditation has 3 basic parts: You sit with your eyes closed, focus on your breathing going in and out of your body, while gently trying not to focus on overwhelming thoughts or distractions around you, until you feel an internal shift, an internal space opening, a space of peaceful tranquillity. 

Historically mindfulness was used in religious practices, but it has been used as a treatment in mental health for many years now.

Try downloading an application like “Calm” on your phone for free guided meditations.

There are many activities you can do with your children, or alone, whatever you need to fill your emotional cup. Embrace the ebb and flow of your feelings and thought during this lock down, while enjoying activities that enrich your life.

Melissa Meyer Schoeman

Occupational Therapist

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