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  • Writer's pictureDr. Edan M. Alcalay

Self Care during COVID-19 Pandemic


Body

  • + Try to make time to eat and stay hydrated. Regular meals give you the fuel you need to stay strong and focused.

  • + Have a stash of healthy and energizing snacks, such as nuts, popcorn, or whole-grain crackers.

  • + Fit exercise in. It lowers stress and can help you sleep better. Even a short 15-minute stint can make a difference. Fold it into daily activities, such as jogging when walking the dog or spending time with your kids on a bike ride.

  • + Don’t let sleep be optional. Prioritize your rest between shifts so you can feel energized when you return.

  • + Before bed, take a moment to write down or mentally inventory your worries; then set them aside until the next day.

  • + Relaxation techniques, such as progressive relaxation or mindful meditation, can help calm you for sleep.

Mind

  • + Stay informed, but don’t overdo news exposure. Notice the impact news stories have on you and limit accordingly.

  • + Take mental “breaks” during the day to focus on something distracting, uplifting, or soothing.

  • + Notice signs that anxiety or stress is building for you. Recognize this as normal, but have management strategies ready.

  • + Find your motivation for prioritizing self-care, then use that as a reminder to make it a regular part of your day.

  • + Be open to turning to others for emotional and practical support. It’s a strength, not a weakness, to reach out.

Spirit

  • + Think about how you’ve coped with hard times before. Try to re-deploy the strengths and strategies that helped then.

  • + Find one or more enjoyable ways to relax your mind and body. Give yourself permission to recharge in this way.

  • + Find creative ways to stay connected with friends, family, loved ones, and supportive social media communities.

  • + Get outdoors. The fresh air and sunlight can renew both health and spirit, as well as help regulate sleep cycles.

  • + Avoid turning to alcohol, drugs, or unhealthy behaviors as a way of coping.


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