The reality of COVID-19 has affected many things in our world. As a plastic surgery practice here in St. Louis, we know our patients are experiencing many changes to their usual daily schedules. Shelter-in-place orders have pushed us into different routines and stay-at-home work hours. Adapting to this new way of life isn’t always easy.
Taking care of your mental health during this time is crucial. We need to stay healthy not only physically but mentally and spiritually as well. If you’re still adjusting to a new stay-at-home life, here are a few tips to take care of yourself mind, body, and spirit.
Create a routine.
When you don’t have to get dressed for work and head out the door at a certain time, it can be easy to lounge around the house in PJs. This may feel freeing at first, but it’s important to make some kind of new daily routine for yourself. Waking up on time and putting on a proper outfit can instantly make you feel more put-together and productive. Following a schedule of some kind—even just a simple morning routine—can make you feel less cut off from the “normal” world.
Add movement to your day.
Exercising at home can be a bit more challenging. With gyms and yoga studios shut down for the time being, most of us have to get creative about our workouts. Fortunately, many companies are now offering online streaming or free workout videos. Others have made useful apps that can walk you through yoga poses or bodyweight exercises.
No matter which format you choose, be sure to incorporate some kind of movement into your daily routine. Using your muscles and getting your blood flowing lowers anxiety while keeping your body toned and strong.
When you don’t have strict office hours, it can be tempting to overwork yourself. But remember: if you want to perform at your best, you need to give your body plenty of rest. Turn off your computer or put away your work at a set time each evening. You can also try reducing screen time and meditating before bed, so your brain can wind down and prepare for sleep.
Take time to focus on yourself.
Staying at home has given many of us extra time on our hands. This is the perfect time to look over your life and adjust your priorities. When you have a free moment, try writing in a journal or starting a project you’ve been putting off for ages. Call family or a long-distance friend to strengthen your relationships. Taking the time to focus on yourself and your loved ones can remind you about what truly matters.
Living through a pandemic presents many challenges. But by gently and attentively taking care of ourselves and one another, we can perhaps come out stronger for it.
If you have any questions for our providers at this time, we offer virtual consultations online. You can request a virtual consultation using our online form or by calling our office at (636) 530-6161.