Feeling The Strain Of Self-Isolation? These Tips Can Help

By Emma Grace Brown

There are many reasons families in self-isolating households might feel stressed and tense. These range from trying to balance a working schedule with familial obligations to boredom and fear. Here are a few of the most common causes along with tips and advice on how to sidestep stress so that you can get through this pandemic with your sanity safely intact.

Working From Home

As the Studio Be Mindfulness blog has pointed out before, working from home is a dream come true for many. Unfortunately, when you don’t have a choice, punching a time clock from home can quickly become a nightmare. What’s important here is that you learn to separate work from home.

This can be difficult since your office is in your home. Set specific hours, and try to avoid multitasking while you work. In other words, let the laundry go until 5 PM, and quit answering emails from the dinner table. You’ll also want to get up and move around to give your eyes and mind a break, both of which will help reduce work-at-home stress.

It’s also wise to address any clutter or cleaning issues now to ensure you have a supportive, comfortable place to work where you don’t feel the constant need to pick up or tidy. Remember, limiting distractions is critical to workplace productivity.

Boredom

You have probably heard your children utter the phrase “I’m bored” more times than you can possibly count over the last several months. And you’ve probably already exhausted their tolerance for board games and books. Fortunately, summer is right around the corner, which provides a chance for everyone to get outside more often. Time outside can easily cut through boredom and stress. Whether it’s backyard activities, spending more time at the beach, hiking or even fishing, your family can get out of the house and reduce tension.

Marital Tension

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, 42% of couples noted the negative effect the pandemic has caused for their relationship, with more than 30% of people considering separation. This is known as a phenomenon called the pandemic divorce. It’s caused by spending entirely too much time with your spouse and not enough time on your own.

For a marriage to work, you have to forge relationships outside of your household. And since you cannot spend time with friends, family, and coworkers, you’ve likely already noticed that you have less intimacy and have nothing to talk about in your down time. If possible, plan to spend a few nights away, and encourage your spouse to do the same occasionally. As they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and a cabin in the mountains for a weekend is much easier on your heart, wallet and mind than a divorce.

If you both determine your relationship needs outside assistance, turn to Warwick Psychological Services for counseling or therapeutic yoga to address marital and personal stress.

Lack of Socialization

Even if you are antisocial most of the time, you’ve probably noticed that the lack of human interaction has gotten to you. And if you have kids, they may already be showing signs of depression because they miss their friends. However, social interactions are crucial during childhood.

Make sure that your kids have one-on-one time with their best friends, and don’t be shy about letting them hop on Zoom for a virtual powwow with their pals. Any in-person play dates should be kept outside and in small groups, and they should center around activities, such as riding bikes or hiking, that encourage social distancing.

Fear

One of the top reasons we are all stressed out is simply because we are afraid. Fortunately, scientists are finally starting to dig deeper into the actual coronavirus, and we know much more about it today than we did in March. If you or your kids still feel apprehensive, look for resources for accurate information. Knowledge is truly power in this instance, and knowing your local infection rates and your actual risk of contracting the virus can ease your mind.

While isolating remains one of the best ways to stay safe, it’s also one of the quickest routes to mental health issues. Look for ways to reduce stress within yourself, with your spouse, and for your children. Small steps, such as taking a weekend away and encouraging safe play dates, are all important actions that will reduce stress when you need it most.

Read more by Emma at Emma’s Website

New Groups with Carola Poblete

New offerings at Warwick Psychology  

Positive Psychology Coaching – Free Trial : 1hr session (last Saturday of every month – max 4 appointments) (from 27 June)


Energy healing / Reiki – Saturday appointments $70 1hr (from 27 June)

New Groups with Elena Lennox

Elena is an accredited Resilience Trainer, Wellbeing Coach and Mental Health First Aid Trainer, well versed in the tools to support and grow healthy minds and healthy people.  B.A., P.G. Certificate in Education,  P.G. Certificate in HR, Cert IV Workplace Trainer, Resilience for Trauma therapist.

Is anxiety sapping your energy and preventing you from doing the things you love? Do you want to get your ‘mojo’ back to build your resilience and improve your performance at work?

Discover the Best You with a range of workshops designed to improve confidence, build emotional intelligence and ‘tame anxiety’.

The ActionPlus toolkit, is designed to show you how to create a personal ‘self care plan’ to encourage new habits and support personal growth. Movement and sound are carefully integrated into this programme to develop new neural pathways and reinforce learning with brain gym and simple Qigong.

The Resilience at Work professional toolkit measures your resilience to leverage your strengths and identify focus areas.

As a teacher and a sports coach Elena’s goal was to motivate her students to grow to their full potential. Rising levels of anxiety in schools meant that Elena’s focus turned to building resilience, improving wellbeing and fitness. Recently she has been working with organisations to create a mentally safe workplace and to improve performance through Resilience Professional Development.

Courses – interactive workshops  60 – 90 minutes    afternoon –  after school – evening

Taming Anxiety                                   six weeks         Teenagers / Adults

Build your Resilience                          six weeks         Teenagers / Adults

Cognitive Development                      four weeks      Adults / Seniors (stay sharp, live longer)

Mental Health First Aid                       two days or blended course online and two half days

Contact admin@wps.support or call 046 88 911 00

Outside of work, Elena loves to kayak on the river and run kayaking courses. She is passionate about that mind body connection and believes that regular exercise, meditation and Qigong practise (Energy + Movement) is the secret of a long healthy life.

Elena enjoys a close connection with Aboriginal elders and loves to ‘yarn’ with them and connect to the land. She is keen to support reconciliation and find a way forward to work together to improve outcomes for indigenous peoples. She loves taking groups to special sites to connect and tap into the wonderful energy of ‘country’.www.elenalennox.com

Memories….

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While there are a litany of brain-training games that claim to improve all manner of skills, researchers from Cambridge University have clinically proven that their app will improve concentration in a month. Read the full story

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Get out there and walk, people!

New study offers ‘strongest evidence’ yet that exercise helps prevent depression

Does physical activity reduce depression, or does depression reduce physical activity? A new study has found that it’s the former, with exercise having a protective effect against depression. Read the full story

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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