How The Right Practice Can Strengthen Your Mental Health.A Guide to Self-Care in a Pandemic.

8 Tips To Feel More Energized

We are all in this together. A pandemic is certainly a challenging time for us all. It is paramount to take care of your mental health for overall wellness and a strong immunity. The following eight practices, done right and done daily, will strengthen your resilience during stressful times.

1.Practice mindfulness: Taking a pause during the day can be a very powerful practice. Take for example, The Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), a cognitive therapy by Professor Jon Kabat-Zinn (an American author of the bestselling 1990 book, Full Catastrophe of Living and founded the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Clinic and the Centre for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School). S.T.O.P. is an exercise that you can integrate to expand mind awareness. The acronym stands for:

S Stop! Whatever you are doing, take a pause.

T Take a breath to connect to the present moment.

O Observe. Assess the situation inside and out. Notice where your mind has gone. 

How are you feeling? How is your physical body feeling?

P Proceed with compassion. Ask yourself, what do I need right now? Perhaps you 

notice tension in your shoulders or your jaw has tightened. Maybe your thoughts are racing. Proceed by making a sensible self-care choice. Begin with stretching, or taking a short walk or drinking a cup of tea. 

The more you practice S.T.O.P. during the day, the more space you create to cut out the bad habit of going on auto-pilot mode and switch to a being-mode.

2. Practice To Empty The Mind: You don’t have to become a monk to practice meditation. This practice, also known as Body Scan Meditation, is an easy-to-follow practice. 

Begin by sitting in a comfortable chair, lean against the back of the chair, rest your hands on your thighs, feel the rhythm of your breath from your abdomen, keep your eyes gazing downward.

As you breathe in and out, connect to all the parts of your body. As you breathe in, say “Re” and as you breathe out, say “Lax”. As you repeat, Relax, feel your breath all over

your body: feet, ankles, calves, knees, thighs, bottom, pelvis, abdomen, chest, lower back, sacrum, shoulders, upper arms, elbows, forearms, hands, fingers one by one, neck, throat, back of the head, ears, and forehead. Include the tiny muscles around the eyes, nose, cheeks, tongue and mouth. This exercise could take five to ten minutes. Last, finish by repeating, "I now let go of all thoughts, all wants, all haves. I am thinking about nothing at all."

3.Let go of worrying thoughts: Your hands work like a magnet, pulling excess anxious thoughts and energy from your body. This activity will help you feel calm and content.