I know, you're already being inundated with information about this new disease, but here are five things you probably haven't read or heard yet, and they're things you can and should do NOW to help ease stress and keep yourself healthy.
1. Breathe deeply.
The absolute worst thing you can do for your health is worry. Prudent concern is one thing, but stress weakens your immune system. Keep worry and anxiety at bay by staying present with some deep, conscious breathing. Wherever you are, you're safe, you have people who love you, and you're going to be okay. Take a deep breath.
2. Check in with people.
The fear and panic are escalating, and your calm, positive energy is going to be SO important for others right now. Gently redirect people in your circle away from fear-mongering “news sources” and change the subject when people around you start spiraling into negative, worried talk. Offer to run errands for people who should stay home, or offer to help a busy mom friend with some extra housecleaning.
3. Pray for others.
The power of positive intention and positive energy is undeniable. Pray for the people who are going to be hit hardest by this thing (including yourself if you're one of them!) and keep your vibration geared toward compassion.
4. Get a new houseplant.
Bring in some new, fresh life! People in hospitals recover faster if there's a live plant in their room, so imagine how much good a plant in your home can do!
5. Give yourself a break from the news.
It's important to stay informed, but give yourself permission to detach from the revolving door of statistics, hand sanitiser shortages, and politicians bloviating about “coming together and showing True American Spirit”.
It might be best to check only one trusted source of info, like Johns Hopkins or the CDC website, and to limit yourself to updates once or twice a day. Steer clear of Facebook and TV news where it's too easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of info.
And here are five more things that you've probably already heard before, but are REALLY important!
1. Get enough rest.
Sleep is essential for keeping your body in peak performance. Prioritise rest, even if it means doing less during the day so you can go to bed on time. Take naps. Don't add anything to your schedule that will make you more tired or cut into your bedtime.
2. Drink lots of water.
Hydration is absolutely essential for your health, and it's more important now than ever. Drink WATER. If you have trouble drinking enough water (like I do!) you can try sparkling water, water with a squeeze of lime, or herbal tea.
3. Eat healthy.
Staying home as much as possible is not an excuse to pack your freezer with pizzas! Fresh veggies are going to be the absolute best for your immune system, followed by fresh fruit and other whole foods. Avoid sugar and processed food, which weaken your immune system.
4. Take vit C, vit D, and zinc
Don't panic and go crazy in the vitamin aisle! The only supplements you really need to add right now are good-quality C, D, and zinc. Together they support your entire body and boost your immune system.
5. Get fresh air.
Fresh air, sunshine, and exercise are known to reduce stress and improve overall health and immune function. Get out in the woods, go to the beach, or just walk around your neighbourhood every day.
Take care of yourself and those around you! Keep calm and carry on.