An app like Headspace will help you to understand anxiety-inducing thoughts as well as storylines. The mediation will help you learn a new perspective, and with this, your relationship with anxiety will begin to change. You can learn your triggers and what you can do to prevent or lessen the anxious thoughts and feelings. Doing these exercises now can help in the future when you are in a situation where you can’t stop and meditate. You’ll be able to deal with real-world scenarios much more effectively, reducing anxiety and stress in your day-to-day life.
Meditation helps bring awareness to our minds and bodies and provides you with techniques that you can use whenever you start to feel that awful feeling of anxiety, making its way into your mind. Taking time to practice these techniques is essential, and an app like Headspace makes it so much easier. You can use it multiple times a day if you want – and you can use it alongside other stress reducers like journaling or physical exercise. Headspace is available on both Android and Apple devices so that you can get it on your phone or tablet.
Then you can turn your attention to the movement of your body. See how your chest, ribs, and belly are moving. Focus on your breath without feeling the need to control how fast you breathe or how intense you are breathing. You can start with a five-count breath in, hold for one second, then a five-count breath out. As long as your breathing is steady and even, you should start to feel calmer and notice how your body feels better with more oxygen going into your blood – flowing through your body from head to toe.
If you find that your mind is starting to wander or get distracted by things surrounding you, bring your attention back to your breath. Your breath is your safe space when you are meditating. It is okay if you need to count again; five seconds in, one-second pause, five seconds out. You can change this to any variation you need, but it is good to pause for a moment at the top of your inhale. Do this for two to three minutes, or however long you need. Meditation is not actual practice, so you can tailor it however you want to.
If you are having a hard time, make sure you are getting a good night’s sleep. Sleep is a natural way to help your mental health. It is important to make sleep a priority in your life as it’s hard to face a new day if you are tired and stressed. Stick to your usual bedtime routine in isolation and maybe try and include some extra relaxation time for yourself to ensure that you are getting the best chance at a good night’s sleep. This opportunity would be a great time to meditate as well.
An excellent way to start getting a good night’s sleep is to establish a nighttime routine. Nighttime routines can begin with having a shower and doing your skincare routine – there are many simple nighttime skincare routines on YouTube to get you started. Nighttime is a good time to journal as well – write down how you are feeling, then follow up with mediation and reflect on what you wrote down. You can end the night in bed with some reading as well. It’s not a bad idea to set the alarm for the morning if you oversleep as well – too much sleep can be just as inadequate as too little sleep. Eating these late-night snacks and foods improves sleep quality.
If you live with other people, you can live a better life in isolation or during lockdown to do your best to avoid conflicts. Everyone is stressed out at the moment, and it could cause unnecessary fights or arguments. If you find you are getting irritated or annoyed, try to remove yourself from the situation and take some time out and relax. When you feel calmer, try to discuss any issues in a relaxed way while returning to the group or person. Keep healthy, and you’ll make it through isolation a better person!
It’s not only about keeping healthy physically, but mentally as well. Find things that help calm you down – finding a new hobby like painting, listening to calm music, gardening or going for a walk are excellent ways to destress. Once you start practicing these things, you can handle conflict better and be calmer in the situation. When you’re calm, it will help the people around you be calm as well. It’s okay to take breaks during arguments if things are getting too heated – take 10 minutes to reflect, then come back. The conversation should be easier after doing that.