Mindfulness is defined as a mental state achieved by focusing awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, (Oxford). In the midst of COVID-19, mindfulness can skillfully be used to increase focus and well-being. The superpower of focus right now can lead you to make and standby the decision that you and your family will be okay, well, or even thrive in the midst of what seems like a storm.
Here are five strategies to help you focus on and achieve wellness during this time of uncertainty and beyond.
1.) Harness the Power of Your Thoughts
Science tells us that we have approximately 60,000-70,000 thoughts a day. Most of these thoughts are negative and fear-based…, especially during this time. It is imperative that we shut off the media once we have gathered a brief (not extensive) understanding of the headlines for the day and that we plant the thoughts of what we want into our minds. Thoughts of fear, worry, and doubt can actually suppress the immune system. Thoughts of joy, love, and happiness can boost the immune system.
2.) Try Breath Work
The breath is our powerful life force. It can enhance or decrease the integrity of our heart function, nervous system, blood pressure, and immune system. It can soothe an episode of anxiety and lighten symptoms of depression. Learn and try this 4-7-8 breathing technique with me for instant calm anytime and anywhere.
3.) Have Something to Look Forward to Daily
Scheduling time for fun can help elevate the joy factor in life. Even under the Stay at Home Order, we can take part in online classes such as dance or Zumba, art, cooking, or coding. You can also join book clubs, religious studies, prosperity or motivational support groups geared towards goal accomplishments, or date nights with other couples to keep your relationship strong. There is truly something for the whole family online.
4.) Consume Healthy Foods and Drinks
Every time you pick up your fork, you have the opportunity to provide your cells with the macro and micronutrients they need to function superbly. Foods such as Broccoli and greens such as collard, kale, and spinach provide a large array of cleansing and nutrient-dense minerals, vitamins, and chlorophyll to the body. Pairing these foods with herbs such as garlic, ginger root, and onion offers antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal protection for the body. Lastly, a nice herbal tea such as a ginger turmeric blend (containing black pepper) can allow for the reduction of inflammation and the stress hormone cortisol. At the same time it can usher in relaxation, improved digestion, and much more, which all lead to enhanced overall health.
5.) Mind Full or Mindfulness…..Implement a Simple Bedtime Routine
Many individuals have reported difficulty sleeping during this time when so much has changed in our lives. Such an occurrence is normal. More support is needed in all areas of our lives right now. Emptying your mind of your thoughts in a journal or notebook before laying down can help slow or stop the mental chatter or chaos…try it. Reflecting on what we did well or what went well for the day and expressing gratitude for what we have trained mind to look out for the positive perspective in life. Set an intention to have a good night’s rest and to wake up fully restored. The mental state that you go to sleep in is usually the mental state that you will wake up in. So end the night at peace as much as possible.
This article was written by Erica Lewis, certified integrative nutrition health & transformation coach.