Young woman by the window with cup of hot coffee

As the spread of the coronavirus continues to impact communities all over the world, authorities like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and healthcare professionals are working hard to contain COVID-19 and provide the public with preventative measures. Nevertheless, the threat of a pandemic and the uncertainty it brings can create feelings of stress, confusion, and anxiousness. During times like these, and really all any time, it’s important to practice self-care as a way to reduce stress levels and maintain our peace of mind.

Here are a few simple ways you can practice self-care today.

1. Meditate

Schedule some time in your day to take a deep breath and clear your mind. Even if it’s just for 10 or 15 minutes, meditating each day can be a very effective way to reduce your stress levels, increase relaxation, and improve sleep. This can also help you practice mindfulness, increasing your self-awareness so you can address how you are truly feeling. If you’re looking to get started, try out guided meditations found on YouTube or download apps such as Headspace and Calm.

2. Write down your feelings

Take the time to reflect on your thoughts and feelings by writing them down. Expressing yourself in this way can help you process your emotions and transfer any lingering thoughts from your mind to the page. Journaling is a great way to record and later review your thought process, so you can be more aware of your own mental and emotional journey. There are even apps like Reflectly and Daylio that help make journaling and mood tracking easy.

3. Nourish your mind, body & spirit

To promote happiness and inner peace in your life, use this time to take actions that refresh and nourish your mind, body, and spirit. Whether that means reading a good book, cooking a nutritious meal for ourselves, or drawing a relaxing bath, do something that is comforting and fulfilling for you. It can even be as enjoying a favorite movie or practicing a hobby.

4. Take a break from the noise

While it is important for us to stay in the know of the most recent COVID-19 updates from health authorities, it can be overwhelming to keep up with all the news stories that can leave us feeling worried. Consider taking daily breaks from the news, social media, or your cellphone. For example, try going tech-free for the first hour you are awake or the last hour before you fall asleep. This will help reduce the noise that clutters your mind.

5. Stay connected

As many of us are working from home and social distancing, it’s important for us to make an effort to stay connected with our loved ones. Have daily phone calls with family, video chat a dear friend, or get a groupchat going to keep up with multiple loved ones. Spending extended periods of time away from others can tend to feel isolating, but luckily technology allows us to still feel closely connected during this experience. Stay connected with others to remind yourself that you are not alone, and we are all in this together.

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