Enjoy Lockdown by making these changes
Change the channel
Being locked in, having no physical contact with the world outside takes its toll on a person, we are social beings (well most of us are). During the first few days of the Lockdown, we had the news channel on for most, if not all of the day. We were keeping a watchful eye on the increasing numbers of infection, growing more and more anxious by the day with fear and concern becoming our normal?
I now make a concerted effort to stop watching the news all day. I set aside 15min of my day in the evening to check what the new COVID-19 stats are, I scan through the headlines, and that is my reality check for the day.
Stop with the binge watching
After making the above change, I moved onto binge-watching Netflix all day. I am sure we can all relate to being glued to the screen for hours on end. As soon as we finished with one series, we quickly looking for the next round to binge-watch. Time becomes an illusion as we fall asleep in the early hours of the morning watching that last episode. You wake up exhausted, and the easiest way forward is to plump back into that space of being lost in another reality. And here we go again another cycle that is benefiting me in no way!
Spend your time doing things that stimulate your mind
So, after a week of binge-watching and realising that even though it may distract me, this is not how I am going to live for the next few weeks. I decided to fill my days with activity and mental stimulation. I now try to watch no TV until 16:00pm or after. Instead of turning on the TV, I work with music or a podcast playing in the background. When I have free time during the day, I cook and try new recipes, I started this blog (this is me trying something new), my husband and I are near completion with our 1000 piece puzzle, I am reading genres that never appealed to me before. I am challenging myself and keeping myself busy. Strangely, these changes make me feel less stressed and calmer.
Lastly, even though I am busy throughout the day, there is a constant cluster of thoughts fleeting through my mind. As we all know, our mind is excessively active and creative. We are continually thinking! What happened last year, last week, yesterday? If we not in the past, we are “imagining” the future. Our minds and thoughts are everywhere other than the present.
Be Present in the moment
It is not easy! My mind still wanders off, but, ever so often, I am making an effort to focus on the present moment. As soon as find my mind wandering, I do the following;
I Identify five sounds around me. I stop, and I listen to all the noises, this is somewhat surprising, we tend to filter out so much.
I look around me, noticing five objects that are in the space. I am amused by how I go through life with blinkers, not seeing what is around me.
Lastly, I think about my body from top to bottom and pay attention to how each part of my body feels, is it tight, is there pain, can I feel the blood rushing through my veins, by the time I get to the end of my body, I am in the present moment.
If my mind is still wandering, I focus on my breathing and pay attention to slowly breathing in and out.
Sometimes I do one of the above, and I am present in the moment, then they’re challenging experiences where my mind continues to wander and only after doing all the above am I more present. There are also times when I just get lost in the thoughts of the past or future. As soon as I realise that I am doing this, I try and let go of the thought process. The more aware I am that I am not present in this moment, the more present I am becoming.
These are the changes I made that are helping me through Lockdown!
For now, this is my new normal! What is your new normal?
Be safe, take care, lots and lots of love and light your way.