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  4.  » The Weekly Pulse: All Day, Every Day Self-Care Tips

We hope this newsletter finds you healthy and safe. There’s no question that the outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been a stressful, anxious, and fearful time for everyone.  We are all adjusting to the day to day life indoors. Diseases in general often incite fear and anxiety but many have found this particularly pandemic to be overwhelming and cause for strong emotion.

During this crisis it’s important to be kind to yourself, loved ones, and friends. There is no set deadline, band-aid, or cure for this crisis. Even the experts aren’t able to say for certain when it will be over. In response we’ve put together a list of helpful tips and words of encouragement intended to help you get through this critical time in our history. By incorporating these self-care activities and tips into each day, you will increase the likelihood of having a healthy future while in quarantine.

Before we begin let’s first clarify what self-care really means? It is the active process of acknowledging and tending to your needs. It includes practices and/or activities that directly contribute to your general wellness. This can include preventative measures such as eating nutritious foods, staying active, and getting adequate rest.

Stay informed – but don’t obsessively check the news

It’s important to stay informed particularly about what’s happening in your community so you can adhere to safety precautions and do your part to slow the spread of the Coronavirus.

  • Stick to trustworthy sources such as the CDC, the World Health Organization, and your local public health authorities.
  • Limit how often you check for updates – constant monitoring of news and social media feeds can quickly turn compulsive and counterproductive – fueling anxiety rather than easing it. Pay attention to how you’re feeling when processing the news reports and adjust your intake accordingly.
  • Step away from the media if you start feeling overwhelmed. If anxiety is an ongoing issue, consider limiting your media consumption to a specific time frame as well as time of day.

Utilize Coping Skills

If you pay attention to the symptoms that arise when you’re stressed, you will find clues into what triggers your stress and the coping mechanisms that works best for you. You can deduce them by reflecting on your past. Think about another time when you were stressed, what helped ground you during that time? Past coping practices that were effective may also be helpful today.
Take time out for activities you enjoy

Read a good book, watch a comedy, play a fun board or video game, try a new recipe, make something – whether it’s a craft or a work of art. It doesn’t matter what you do, so long as it mentally separates you from your worries.

Be kind to yourself and others

Go easy on yourself if you’re experiencing more depression or anxiety than usual. You’re not alone in your struggles.  An infectious disease is not connected to any racial or ethnic group, so speak up if you hear negative stereotypes that only promote prejudice. With the right outlook and intentions, we can all ensure that kindness and charity spreads through our communities faster than the virus.
Connect with others 
Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling. Be certain to show people with an optimistic disposition.
Be a calming influence
If loved ones or friends are panicking, try to help them gain some perspective. Being a positive uplifting influence in these anxious times can help you feel better about your own situation.
Find ways to exercise
Staying physically active will help you release anxiety, relieve stress, and manage your mood effectively. While the gym and group classes are out, you can still cycle, hike, or walk. If practicing social distancing or in quarantine, look online for exercise videos you can follow. There are many things you can do even without equipment, such as yoga and strength training that utilizes your own bodyweight.
Maintain a routine as best as you can
Even if you’re stuck at home, try to stick to your regular sleep, school, meal or work schedule. This will help you maintain a sense of normalcy.
 Seek help when needed
An infectious outbreak such as the Coronavirus is stressful to you, your loved ones, and your friends. If you or someone you care about needs support, you can reach out to NYC Well. They have a website that offers a number of well being and emotional support applications to help you cope. NYC Well is a confidential helpline for mental health and substance misuse services.

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