Surviving two years of the pandemic has certainly been interesting to say the least. March 2020 upended life for pretty much every single person on this planet. Very few things have affected literally the entire world quite like COVID-19. The pandemic has become a major world event in our own lifetime. It’s been a mess, and we’re all anxiously waiting for things to get back to “normal.”
Whether you’ve actually been sick or not, it’s pretty safe to say everyone—if not most people—have experienced some personal trials. We're all dealing with things the best way we can.
Here are a few tips to help improve overall health during these unique circumstances:
Eating healthy food
Eating healthy might not be the most exciting thing to do, but it is an important part of living a long and happy life. Eating well-balanced meals can help you stay full for longer periods of time, which will lead to less bingeing later on in the day. Healthy eating also provides your body with the necessary nutrients to function properly and boost your immune system.
The key to eating healthily is making sure your diet contains a balance of foods: vegetables and fruit; protein-rich foods like meats and certain grains; dairy items such as milk, cheese, yogurt and eggs for mineral content; and lipids including omega 3s found in fish oils that are important for brain development. You should also limit sugar, as this can challenge your immune system functions, cause cravings for unhealthy foods, and disrupt healthy energy levels.
Exercising regularly is a great way to maintain your mental and physical health while boosting your energy levels. Without it, you might feel sluggish during the day due to too much sitting at work or school.
Exercising regularly can also make you happier, healthier, and more fulfilled. Exercising can also help to boost your mood and alleviate stress. It has been shown in studies that people who exercise regularly have lower levels of anxiety than those who do not workout at all.
If you feel sluggish and therefore you don't feel like exercising—that is exactly when you need to exercise—to get your blood flowing faster to nourish your body and especially your brain. It will also get your sluggish lymph moving to transport toxins out of your system. Bonus!
Getting enough sleep every night
There's no better way to get a clear head and fresh start than with a perfect night's sleep. Give yourself permission to turn off your phone when you go to bed. Use this time solely for self-care! Studies have shown that regular restful sleep contributes not only to lower rates of depression, Alzheimer's disease, obesity, diabetes and hypertension, but also a longer life expectancy. Sleep is essential for your brain. Each night during your slumber, your brain is detoxing, which is key to mental clarity and well-being.
Sleep deprivation can cause many illnesses including heart attack or stroke—even if you're in good shape—because sleep deprivation reduces blood flow throughout the body which causes an increased risk for these conditions, as well as high cholesterol levels.
Challenges of working from home
Many people would love the idea of never having to go into an office again, but there are many challenges that come with working from home. For instance, one may struggle with their productivity when they can't concentrate in a confined space and are surrounded by distractions like pets or children running around. Other things such as internet connection speeds, or lack thereof, make it difficult to get work done depending upon your profession.
For many people, working from home is the perfect way to balance their work and “domestic” life. But for others it can be a major challenge—even for those who are used to being in charge of themselves and having complete control over their own schedules. These challenges include: isolation, loneliness, lack of vocal feedback, and depression due to a lack of social connection.
The good news is that if you're feeling this way, you are certainly not alone. If you are struggling while working from home, here are some tips to help make your space more productive:
Declutter: Try and keep a clean workspace by cleaning up after yourself daily or as needed, so that it doesn't continue to pile up.
Furniture: Invest in an ergonomic desk chair with good back support for long hours on the computer/phone etc. Not only will this be much more comfortable than sitting hunched over, but also better for posture!
Distractions: Get rid of any distractions (TVs, social media) which might tempt you away from working. Set boundaries between personal time and when required focus is necessary.
- Move: Avoid sitting in the same spot all day long. Move around every couple hours or so! Even if you're just sitting at a desk typing away on the computer for eight hours straight, get up once an hour or two and go do something else instead. Walk over to that window facing east; enjoy breakfast under morning light while checking email; stretch out ten minutes after lunchtime (especially important when working late into the night); and take a quick walk outside during breaktime.
When we are faced with a pandemic, it can be hard to know what is the best course of action. But if you take care of yourself and your loved ones first, then everything else will fall into place. It's important to remember that one of our best defenses against a pandemic is to keep ourselves both mentally and physically healthy so we are less likely to get sick—or better still—so we are stronger in order to manage it well.