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How to handle Stress during a lockdown

The question was asked by a little friend of mine, she could not be more than 4 years old, she knew something was going on and so she heard the term lockdown and asked the question, “what is a lockdown?” For a minute there I was stuttering with my answer.

Stress during a lockdown

What is a lockdown? Lockdown is an emergency protocol that prevents people from leaving a given area. A full lockdown will mean you must stay where you are and not exit or enter a building or the given area. She looked at me with a puzzled looked, so I just said to her you have to stay at home because there is a virus out there to get you and if it does it can take your life, she just went back to playing and that was the end of the question.

It then occurred to me that people are not prepared mentally for dealing with stress during a lockdown and so I asked some friends to assist me with how are they handling the anxiety of a lockdown and I will share the various answers with you:

Cooking the stress away. 

Stress during a lockdown

Get that cookbook,  check on the different ingredients and cook away. Making meals helps to reduce stress, heal a broken heart, among other benefits. … “Cooking is a great destresser because it serves as a creative outlet,” says Debbie Mandel, author of “Addicted to Stress.” “And while stress can numb your senses, cooking activates them.

Listening to Music

Stress during a lockdown

Listening to music can have a tremendously relaxing effect on our minds and bodies, especially slow, quiet classical music. This type of music can have a beneficial effect on our physiological functions, slowing the pulse and heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing the levels of stress hormones. I play my keyboard and I am discovering some new touches, this is great!

Do you know how to stitch?

Stress during a lockdown

If hobbies have an image, embroidery has for many years been in the realm of tea cosies and crochet rugs. But young, stressed professionals are now taking up needlepoint as a way to relax and enjoy the benefits of their labour, and medical experts are supportive of embroidery as an effective way to improve creativity and mindfulness. I can relate to that as both my parents are in the dressmaking and tailoring business and it does have it’s benefits.

Try some gardening

Stress during a lockdown

For those of us who live where there is some land, heaven. We can do some gardening.  A recent study in the Netherlands suggests that gardening can fight stress even better than other relaxing leisure activities. After completing a stressful task, two groups of people were instructed to either read indoors or garden for 30 minutes and would you believe it, the ones who did 30 of gardening after being tested were stress-free. At first, it was not so appealing but I water the plants every day and I like it.

It is time to dance

Stress during a lockdown

The scientific reason for why dance can act as a stress reliever stems from the idea that when the body feels good, the mind does too. … Endorphins are the body’s natural painkiller to reduce stress and improve the mind’s perception of the world. I got two left feet, it is a lockdown, who is looking?

Plan ahead

Stress during a lockdown

The stress management technique that worked best, according to the survey: planning. In other words, “fighting stress before it even starts, planning things rather than letting them happen,” says Epstein. “That means planning your day, your year and your life so that stress is minimized.” It is a lockdown, so instead of spending your day watching movies and CNN, take some time and start planning your future, you got some time on your hand.

Check up on those friends

Stress during a lockdown

Having friends may well keep you healthier and help you deal with stress better. Some studies show that people with close friends have a greater ability to fight disease than solitary people.

Make friendship a priority. Find the time to check on your friends even if it means letting the lawn go unmowed or the dishes unwashed for a while. When you can’t get together like in a lockdown, use the phone to keep in touch. “A good friend is better than pocket money.”

As a family, we have our routine, but with the lockdown, we realized that we needed to do some scheduling and everyone has a role to play, we are not perfect and sometimes there is a breach but we are experiencing a calmer environment, I am still very upset about my grapes disappearing as I was looking forward to having some, but that too is a part of what happens in a lockdown.

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