This post is a part of YKA’s dedicated coverage of the novel coronavirus outbreak and aims to present factual, reliable information. Read more.
Locked at home, no outings, not meeting friends, nothing seems exciting. Haina? Even having a haircut or getting your eyebrows done feels like a far fetched idea in these times. If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or panicking, be reassured that this is a very normal response. All you need is some self-care, some TLC (tender love caring).
In simple words – self-care means caring about yourself – emotionally, mentally and even physically. But how do you do that? We have got a few things for you to think about (covered in this article) and a few things to do (covered in a separate article here). Shall we begin?
Choose positivity: Wake up to your favourite song each morning, or just sleep an hour or two earlier at night to ensure that you are not too groggy in the morning. Hug your parents, sibling, partner or anyone you like (can be your pet too!) when you wake up.
Mind your words: All the locking in and not going out can make you feel frustrated, so it’s normal to get angry. We all have bad days, but how you choose to speak to others ricochets back to how people will speak to you. Count till ten when you get angry. Learn to hold back hurtful words.
Speak up: Did not like what your mom said about your friend? Feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work you have? Talk about it rather than holding up your feelings inside. Holding up feelings inside you will only lead to you getting frustrated and angry. So, speak up! The other person will not know how you feel unless you talk about it.
Give space to yourself and others: You don’t have to be with your partner and family all the time. Take out time for yourself – alone. Do things you like to do – reading, catching up with your friends/colleagues over the phone, gardening, or even just sleeping. It will help you feel refreshed and rejuvenated.
Don’t hold back: This may be a tough period to express or act on sexual desires. But hey what about the good old masturbation – and sexting (if you have a partner and they consent). Don’t hold yourself back (as it will only lead to unnecessary frustration), but do be as discreet and respect other people’s privacy. Go to a separate room of the house and satisfy your desires.
How To Stay Sane – Mentally!
Have a routine: This is the first thing you have to do. Make a schedule for yourself. Working professionals anyway have work-from-home commitment to cater to. Students can use up this time to read, learn and practice. Also, consider getting on with a home work-out routine. It can work wonders to keep your mind calm, and of course, transform your body.
Stay active and exercise: Yes, gyms are closed and we cannot go out for a walk in the park but when you need inspiration – go to social media. Your favorite Bollywood celebs like Katrina Kaif, Mandira Bedi and many others are telling you how to work out at home! Endorphins (hormones released by exercise) naturally reboot our body. Whether it’s an evening run or power walk, yoga, or just following a 5-minute dance workout on YouTube in the comfort of your home, get your body moving.
Meditate, yes you!: I know most of you will say – Nah! Not my cup of tea. But trust us, this is the best way to calm your mind. Have an excuse that you do not know how to start? Well, take tips and tricks from this helpful guide on how to start. You can also practise mindfulness. Now you will ask – ab yeh kya bala hai? Well, do you like drinking chai or coffee?
So next time when you’re having a cup of tea, pay attention to your senses – the smell of the adrak/elaichi in the tea, the smell of coffee beans, the froth in your coffee, the warmth of the cup in your hand, the taste, the vapours on the outside of the cup etc. Bas this is mindfulness! In simple words, it is our ability to be fully present and aware of where we are and what we’re doing; focusing ourselves on one task without any distractions – no matter how small the task is. Mindfulness helps calm your mind and also improves your focus.
Gadget detox: Spending all day with your gadgets – like TV, mobile phone, laptop etc can also make you anxious. Set up some rules of no gadgets for particular times. Using any electronic devices before bed suppresses the release of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin, and makes it more difficult to fall asleep.So start with no gadgets during meals and finally graduate to no gadgets before your sleep time.
Take a break from the news and social media: Yes, you heard it right. No Raveesh Kumar, Rajat Sharma or Arnab Goswami for evening! Same applies to news on WhatsApp. Don’t trust everything you see and hear. Read or see what’s really important and to stay up to date. You don’t need to hear endless debates! And social media – that’s on top of the anxiety inducer list these days. Turn off all notifications on the phone, log out from Facebook, mute your WhatsApp – even if it is for a couple of hours. Have no self control? Installing a website blocker can help as it does not allow you access to Twitter.
Connect with Maa and Papa: So our very own Doordarshan is TV programmes like Ramayana or Circus? And it’s no doubt making your parents feel all nostalgic. Why not join them for a feel-good trip. Or take a trip down the family memories. Get those old albums out. Nothing works to beat stress like laughing over that those old tales within the family.
Learn something new: Our favourite actor Hrithik Roshan has challenged himself to learn piano in 21 days while Katrina Kaif has mastered the art of washing utensils. How about you? It’s time to forget all excuses and learn something new – cooking, baking, gardening. YouTube has great free online tutorials for almost everything!
Pamper/Massage at home: Salon closed, but what about just sitting down on a mat and giving that bottle of oil to your partner, sibling, or anyone in the family for a good old champi ! You can also offer to give a head massage to your mom or dad after a long day. Same way you can also take a bucket of hot water, put some shampoo in it and dip your feet in it. Put on some nice music and feel nirvana at home.
Declutter: Not just your mind but your home and shelf too – yes that book shelf, . Start with one shelf a day. Here is a tip – discard almost all the stuff that you have not used at all in the last one year.
Check out our forums/Let’s talk: And let’s but not the least. If you’re feeling (or literally are) isolated, need help on matters on love, sex and relationships and don’t know where to seek help, Love Matters hai na! We also have an online forum called Let’s Talk where you can ask your queries and we will try to reply to you soon!
And last but not least. If you’re feeling (or literally are) isolated, need help on matters on love, sex and relationships and don’t know where to seek help, Love Matters hai na! We also have an online forum called Let’s Talk where you can ask your queries and we will get back to you soon!