A year into the coronavirus pandemic, people have become overwhelmed with new information, strict health measures, family life, and long work hours at home. We have been like this for months, and it has affected us in different ways. While we have been taking steps to care for our health and well-being, the pandemic has encouraged us to focus more on self-care.
Practicing self-care can help us in many ways as we pause for a while amid a global pandemic. While it is normal to feel overwhelmed or stressed during these uncertain times, uncontrolled emotional responses may lead to anxiety and depression, while physical responses include sleeplessness, fatigue, muscle tension, and headache.
While this may sound obvious, looking after ourselves goes beyond health and wellness. Being in perfect shape means having the capability to support the family during these trying times. To ensure overall health and wellness during this pandemic, here is a discussion about self-care and how to practice it at home. Follow these steps to be in a perfect position to provide care for your family.
According to the World Health Organization, self-care is the ability to maintain health, prevent disease, promote well-being, and manage illness with or without the help of a healthcare provider. Self-care also means putting oneself first. This isn’t something to do with selfishness, but it is a necessary measure for those who forget about their overall health and well-being.
For example, parents who have become too absorbed in work and household chores tend to forget about self-care. Taking care of themselves often slips in their minds as they busy themselves with their day-to-day routines. As a result, self-care becomes a luxury for those who cannot afford the time to look after themselves.
Self-care comes in different forms. In fact, people have been doing it for many years. You can go to a salon, get a good night’s sleep, or visit a diagnostic center for eye or ear care. But because of the shifting trends in healthcare, self-care interventions have increased, paving the way for facilities, technologies, and medicines that people can use for themselves.
During this pandemic, popular self-care actions now include handwashing, respiratory hygiene, and physical distancing to minimize the impact of COVID-19 on one’s health. While there are plenty of areas to practice self-care, people began to look for other ways to make a great difference to their health and well-being.
When is the best time for self-care?
In a report by Kaiser Family Foundation, over half of U.S. citizens suffer from stress and worry because of the pressures brought by COVID-19. These negative responses led many people to deal with uncertain time frames at work, home, and school. As a result, social activities and interactions suffer, resulting in adverse effects on mental health.
The impact of the pandemic has brought significant pressure to our normal routine, making it the best time to rethink our efforts towards self-care. People have become too occupied with the daily pressures of financial distress, school and work closures, job loss, social distancing, increased isolation, and lack of access to basic services. These changes to behavior and lifestyle forced everyone to worry about their loved ones and the current social climate.
Parents are the ones greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Stay-at-home mothers have to shoulder everything from household chores, parenting, job, and e-learning duties. All these make it difficult to take care of themselves as the pandemic drags on.
Self-care at home
The Internet offers a great deal of information for self-care ideas. Since we are in self-isolation, this is a great time to consider every option to take care of our health and well-being. As we adapt to the new normal, it is important to look for new ways to boost our morale, reduce stress, and focus on meditation and mindfulness.
If you are working at home, set specific work hours to devote more time to the family. During free time, engage in virtual classes or check with family members and close friends. This is also a great time to encourage the family to do things together, such as exercising, meditating, watching movies, and playing with pets.
Being kind to your body will help you keep calm these trying times while ensuring you can take care of the family. When it gets too overwhelming, take a step back to recharge your depleted resources and make time for yourself. As you prioritize health and well-being, you will be in a better position to offer physical and emotional support to others just when they need them.