The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented crisis in our lives. And also it has become tough to maintain a healthy lifestyle. With many people losing their jobs and many more forced to work from home full-time. They have created uncertainty and worries related to finances, job security, elderly parents, childcare, and disrupted our routines, our lifestyles, and mental health. These types of situations lead to stress, which multiplies with the barrage of news coverage and constant flood of messages across social media. Added to this is the uncertainty about the future that can increase our sense of anxiety.
Stress is the typical reaction in such situations, which can have severe effects on the body and mind. According to Brian C Jensen, stress disturbs our eating and sleeping patterns, lowers motivation. And leads to emotional outbursts or irritability and drives us towards drugs and alcohol.
Here are some tips for managing stress and staying healthy during the most difficult time of our lives.
Brian C Jensen advises avoiding Caffeine, Nicotine, and Alcohol
Reduce or abhor the consumption of beverages that contain caffeine like tea and coffee and abstain from alcohol and nicotine. Caffeine and nicotine are known stimulants that will only increase stress instead of reducing it. Alcohol taken in small quantities is a stimulant but turns into a depressant when taken in larger quantities. It means that alcohol cannot help you reduce stress. Instead of alcoholic and also caffeinated drinks, start taking water, herbal tea, or diluted fruit juices of natural origin. Keep yourself hydrated as this will enable your body to cope better with stress.
Also, reduce the intake of refined sugar present in many foods like bread and salad dressings. Which can lead to energy crashes and cause fatigue. Eat a nutritious, healthy, and well-balanced diet.
Get more sleep
Lack of sleep is a significant cause of stress that hinders relaxation of the mind that helps to make you fall asleep. Instead of relying on medication, aim to keep the mind relaxed before going to sleep. Maintain tranquility in the bedroom and eliminate any stress-inducing element like some reminders. That you have set, which can disturb the calmness of mind and cause stress. Evening onwards stops taking drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol as these induce stress and will not allow you to sleep. Stress buildup makes thoughts whirl through our heads that interrupts sleep. Go to bed at a fixed time every day, it must never be too late so that your body and also mind adapt to the routine.
Try relaxation techniques
Practice some stress reduction techniques daily that helps to stay light-hearted and also happy. The easiest way to relax is to focus on phrases that convey a definite meaning to you, such as ‘love,’ ‘peace,’ ‘calm,’ and ‘work well’ or utter some self-affirming thought like ‘Grant me serenity.’ If your mind wanders, focus on your chosen word or phrase.
Do not expect instant relaxation because it takes time to harness the mind and gradually acquire the skill.