- Follow your routine as much as you can. For example, exercise and get dressed for the day. If you’re wearing PJ’s all day and you typically wouldn’t do that, that’s not your routine. (Ok, I confess, I wore PJ’s & sweats the first week when I wasn’t doing Telehealth.) However, I did notice a difference when I did get dressed for the day. Our brains like what’s familiar.
- Stay Connected. Schedule Zoom/FaceTime/Skype calls with loved ones. Check in with people to see how they’re doing. My dad checked in on me the week before my birthday. (This was before quarantine really hit). He wanted to know what he could get me. I told him I really could use toilet paper and paper towels. He thought that was funny but he hadn’t been to the stores yet to see that they were gone! So, he ordered me paper towels online for my birthday present. Best birthday gift ever!!
- What Went Well? Write down things that went well or ways that people have helped you during this time of quarantine. I call it my “How Others Have Helped Us During COVID19” list. For example, I’m amazed at how many people who have offered to bring us distilled water when we couldn’t find any at the store. Our friends know that we have 2 family members in our household who are on sleep apnea machines and we need distilled water to operate those machines. We were so touched by the generosity that we pay it forward in other ways. One way to pay it forward is by thanking medical staff. Send emails of appreciation to hospitals or medical staff you personally know.
I’m curious, what has helped you during this time to reduce stress?
Heather Severn Callister, LMFT
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Photo Courtesy: @seainside_photo