Supporting your mental health
words by Luke Mcleod, founder of Soul Alive
I’m concerned that a major part of this pandemic is not being addressed and that is the state of people’s mental health. Seeing first hand how people have responded over the last week or so tells me clearly that we need to be putting in place measures that look after our mental health right now just as much as our immune system health.
Here are a few simple exercises you can do that can help if you’re feeling a bit more stressed or anxious than usual.
- Spend time in nature if you can. Sure we need to be mindful of where we go and what we do right now but completely locking yourself indoors can have mental repercussions, like increased levels of worry or anxiety. Isolation can often lead to fixated thinking and paranoia (ever heard of cabin fever?). Think of a few places around your home that are very open, where you can immerse yourself in nature. National parks provide plenty of space and allow you to absorb the natural healing benefits of nature.
- There’s still so much to be grateful for. Practising gratitude in times like this can really be helpful. It pulls the brain out of worry and anxiety and forces it to think of something that is good and present, right here, right now. Think about the fact that you have supportive, great friends around you, a loving family, maybe the fact that we now have the ability to be informed almost in real-time of how we deal with serious issues like the one we are facing right now. These are all blessings and reminding yourself of them right now will help.
- Try meditation. If you haven’t tried meditation before, now is the time. Why? It’s proven to help anxiety and stress, calm you down and you are able to engage with it on your own. Everything we need right now. Soul Alive which is an online meditation service that delivers live-streamed classes every week is a perfect solution.
- Support your friends and family. It mightn’t be able to spend time catching up with them face-to-face. But it’s a perfect time to pick up the phone to call or send a message to your loved ones and check-in to see how they are doing. A simple chat with someone close to you can do wonders in improving your mood, and may also give them an opportunity to express how they’re feeling. We’re all in this together and the more patience and compassion we can show to each other, the better.
Keeping fit at home
words by Sam Wood, founder of 28 App
My 28 program has seen hundreds of thousands of people get fit, strong and lose weight from the comfort of their own home.
Home workouts are very effective and you don’t need a lot of equipment. Here is a full-body workout that will tone and strengthen and it is made up of bodyweight and resistance band exercises only:
- Couch Pushups
- Leg Lowers
- Band Rows (Place band under couch leg)
- Band Bicep Curls
- Alternating Reverse Lunges
- High Knee Jog (as fast as you can)
Beginners – complete each move for 30 seconds with 30 seconds rest in between (complete 2 rounds)
Intermediate – complete each move for 40 seconds with 20 seconds rest in between (complete 3 rounds)
Advanced – complete each move for 50 seconds with 10 seconds rest in between (complete 4 rounds)
I am going to be running as many FREE LIVE STREAM workouts as I can during this tough time to help people work out from home. I’ll announce them shortly on @samjameswood Instagram once I lock them in.