The world has changed drastically in these past couple of months, and we are all trying to adapt to a new way of living; from socialising to working from home and even changing how we exercise. Being careful not to romanticise the dire situation the world is in, I am here to offer three simple ways that might help you better cope with the changing situation.
Learn deep breathing
We are so used to the constant fast-paced life, that when something forces us to slow down, it can feel like the worst possible thing. Learn to pause regularly and focus on your breathing – deep belly breathing can really help you de-stress and relax. Lie down on your back or sit upright with your legs crossed. Exhale. Inhale slowly through your nose, filling your belly with air and relaxing your muscles. Exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat. Make this a part of your daily routine.
Focus on the positive by practicing gratefulness
Whenever possible, be it first thing in the morning or last thing in the evening, try to recount things you are grateful for. These things needn’t be big; they can be something as small as a smile or a positive encounter that happened earlier in the day. The important thing is to focus on things that you are grateful for – at that moment in time.
We are all aware of the addictiveness of our screens. They were designed to be that way and even though we all know that, it seems impossible to break the habit. Start breaking the cycle by turning off all notifications on your phone – from emails to social media updates, just turn. Them. Off.
If you are working, dedicate a time in your day when you are fully focused in your work, with no external distractions. With our attention spans drastically cut short by the constant flow of emails and social media feeds, this exercise might first feel like a struggle. Start with fifteen minutes and work your way up. Whether you are reading a book (an actual book, not one on your screen) or playing a game with your kids, see how long you can keep your focus without checking your phone.
If you can’t spend a whole day completely offline, then at least make some rules around screen time. For example, no screens for the first and last hour of your day and log in to social media only through your desktop browser, deleting all social media apps off your phone. One simple change can make a big difference to your productivity and ability to focus.
If you’re looking for book recommendations, here are some of my favourite reads:
Zen – The Art of Simple Living by Shunmyo Masuno
The Abundance of Less by Andy Couturier
Essentialism by Greg Mckeown
Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport
I hope these tips will be helpful. Let’s look after each other, keep well and stay safe.
This guest post was gracefully written by our contributor Maria Laitinen.
Maria is a mum-of-one, based in Sydney's Northern Beaches.
In between school runs and part-time work at a Scandinavian design company, she enjoys spending time in nature, and is passionate about all things Japanese.
You can find her on Instagram @scandihome.
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