This post comes to you from day 5 of home confinement, in the South of France. It is with sadness that sessions at The Wellbeing Atelier are now on hold for the foreseeable future. However, this period of time is opening up other possibilities for personal growth that I am relishing and I will continue to post and make online offerings available.
We know that during this period it’s really important that we look after our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing so I thought I’d share with you some professional advice as to how to manage these uncertain times.
Occupational Therapy Recommandations
The Royal College of Occupational Therapy have come up a list of things to have in your day to adapt to social distancing and quarantine click here for the article which . Below are the recommendations to maintain wellbeing:
1. Establish a daily routines. Routines provide structure and purpose.
2. Balance your weekly routine so you have a good mix of work (activities that have to be done), rest and leisure.
3. Think about the regular activities that are most important to you. What are the most important elements in these? Can you adapt them to carry out in your home? for example, an online class in place of the class you’d usually attend.
4. Set daily goals to provide purpose and a sense of achievement. This might include working through that list of things you’ve been meaning to do but never get round to.
5. Identify the triggers that make you feel low and look for ways to reduce or manage them.
6. Talk with family, friends and neighbours to help them understand how you feel and how they can help if you need support.
7. Take care of yourself. Eat and drink healthily with plenty of fruit, vegetables and water to boost you immune system and energy levels.
8. Avoid staying still for too long. Exercise and regular movement maintain fitness and strength. If you are working form home, take breaks and eat away from your desk.
9. Have a good sleep routine. If you are struggling, try avoiding tea and coffee in the late afternoon and evening, take a bath, listen to gently music, switch off phones and computers and read a book.
10. Keep in touch. Arrange to speak to someone most days.
We are all managing this epidemic together. You are not alone in this, if you have nobody you feel you can reach out to get in touch and I can signpost you to relevant organisations in the UK and France.
The French Breathing Pause.
Now having read through that non-exhaustive list I’d like to invite you to try out the ‘French Breathing Pause’. This self-soothing tool is a new addition to my wellbeing toolkit and I have learnt it from my French husband and many of my friends here, they don’t seem to notice that they do it. It’s a brillant technique which calms the nervous system as you retain more air in the body for it to absorb more oxygen. I will take credit for naming it but not as a technique itself as this probably goes way back in French history….
Deep breath in. Puff out your cheeks and slowly release it through pursed lips.
Do let me know how you get on. Red lipstick is optional.