How to Keep It Together While Social Distancing: Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Mind and Body, No Matter What

We are experiencing difficult times. While some of us have lived through various virus scares and health pandemics in the past, the Coronavirus is a different kind of animal. 

We're being told, and in some cases, forced to practice social distancing. However, it's not without cause. The Coronavirus is incredibly contagious and can lie dormant in carriers for up to two weeks, during which time they can spread the virus to everyone they come in contact with.

The question is, during these unprecedented times, how can you maintain a healthy mind and body? What can you do to keep it together while social distancing?

While we don't presume to be experts on health epidemics or the Coronavirus, we can help you stay healthy (and sane) while confined to your own home. Keep reading for our top tips.

1. Stay Active

At some point in their life, 25 percent of Canadians battle a major depressive episode that could constitute treatment. However, when it comes to minor depression, sun-downing, or simply feeling down on a daily basis, the numbers are much more devastating. One of the primary reasons behind this is our sedentary lifestyles.

People go to work and sit at a desk all day. Then, they come home and sit on their couch until bedtime. While some people have established good exercise habits, most people are rarely active throughout the week. 

Exercising can help maintain a healthy mind and body because it reduces depression by releasing endorphins, a natural feel-good chemical in your body. However, exercise can also help boost your self-confidence and take your mind off of stress-inducing factors going on in your life (like social distancing).

woman doing yoga with kidFind the time to do your favourite workout at home.

While we understand that you can't go to the gym while social distancing, there are plenty of at-home exercises you can do. For example, you can do pushups, situps, squats, lunges, and leg levers and try to get a few more reps each day. Finally, as long as you aren't defying any regulations, it may also be beneficial to go for a walk around your neighborhood to get some fresh air and sunlight. 

Pro tip: Being in the sun helps your body synthesize vitamin D. Both vitamin D and exercise are good for your skin.

2. Dive Into Fulfilling Hobbies

Many of us complain that we're always "too busy" to take adequate time for ourselves. You may not truly enjoy exercising, but everybody has at least one hobby they enjoy at home. This could be anything from knitting to baking. 

Person knitting

While it may not be the way you wanted it to happen, now is a good time to indulge in your hobbies. Dive into your art or your music. Get back to writing that book you never have time for. 

If you can't do your favorite hobbies right now because of our current situation, consider trying new hobbies. Subscribe to Masterclass and learn new skills from the best. You may find a talent in yourself you never knew existed.

3. Practice Good Hygiene Habits

No matter how strict the social distancing regulations are in your town, you can't avoid people entirely. Unless you're on total lockdown and aren't allowed to leave your home, you may still be going to the gas station, grocery stores, etc.

While these activities make you more vulnerable, you can maintain a healthy mind and body by practicing good hygiene habits. Make sure you wash your hands after being out in public (carry around hand sanitizer if possible). Additionally, try not to touch your face while out in public.

Nena Skincare instagram wash handsStay safe, stay home, and stay healthy...and wash your hands!

However, even when you're staying in the comfort of your own home, it's important to keep up with your hygiene. Social distancing is not an excuse to stay in your pajamas all day or stop showering. Make sure you're keeping your body fresh and clean every day, even if you're not leaving the house, it will keep you healthier and happier.

Finally, try to get a little sun and fresh air every day. Sit on your porch or go for a walk. If it's too cold, bask in the sunlight coming in through a window and crack it just enough to bring in some outside air.

4. Do Something Productive

Many of us are procrastinators when it comes to nonessential tasks in our lives. If you're not a procrastinator, perhaps you're simply to busy during the average workweek. Regardless, if you're being forced to practice social distancing, now is a great time to check off a few items on your to-do list. 

For example, consider going through your finances and setting yourself up on a budget. Did you know that nearly 50 percent of Canadians live paycheck to paycheck? If you're in that category, you're likely feeling a significant financial strain from social distancing. 

Dig deep into your expenditures to see where your money goes each month. Odds are, there are plenty of areas where you can cut back and save money. 

Here are some more ideas on how you can be productive:

  • Start a home improvement project 
  • Declutter your home
  • Organize your storage
  • Prepare for an early spring garage sale.
  • Deep clean your home
  • Detail your car

5. Take Some Extra Time for Skin Care

Maintaining a healthy mind and body includes taking care of the body's biggest organ - your skin. Even though you're not going out during social distancing, now is a great time to indulge in or create healthy skincare practices. 

For example, focus on treating your skin gently. Don't overdo your bath and shower times and be sure to pad yourself dry, rather than rubbing. Additionally, make sure you're moisturizing regularly, especially with the amount of handwashing and sanitizing going on right now. 

NENA Natural Skincare Kit

Finally, take this time to do some extra facial cleansing and rejuvenating. Did you know that glacial clay masks will not only help moisturize your dry skin but also pull out impurities? Take a spa day and treat yourself to a clay mask, a manicure, and a pedicure. 

However, just be sure not to make the common clay mask mistakes.

6. Meditate

Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years throughout the various cultures and religions in the world. While people traditionally relate mediation to eastern religions, meditation doesn't have to be religious or spiritual at all. 

Many people use mediation to help them slow down and improve their self-awareness. Meditation is a tool that helps us reduce depression, increase focus, improve attention span, lower anxiety, and more. 

While practicing social distancing, one of the best ways to keep a healthy mind and body is by taking up a simple mediation routine. Start slow with 10 to 15 minutes a day. You may find it difficult to maintain focus initially.

Here are some simple steps:

  • Find a quiet room in the house free of distractions
  • Set a timer for 10 to 15 minutes
  • Sit in a relaxing position 
  • Focus on your breathing, feel the oxygen entering your body and filling your lungs and notice the rise and fall of your chest as you inhale and exhale
  • Try not to let your mind wander - when it does, simply bring your focus back to your breathing
  • Take note of the thoughts running through your mind, but don't linger on them - return your focus to your breathing

7. Work on Your Nutrition

Depending on your province and city, there may or may not be restaurants still serving takeout food. While this may be a tempting idea, it's not the wisest. Most restaurant foods are higher in calories and you should think twice about spending unnecessary money right now, unless you want to support your local business.

Instead, take an interest in promoting a healthy mind and body through nutrition. Over 60 percent of Canadians are overweight or obese and it's directly related to our diets. Take this time to practice your healthy cooking skills to better prepare yourself for the future.

Canada's Food GuideStay healthy, eat a variety of healthy foods each day. Take inspiration from Canada's Food Guide.

Play around with new recipes or flock to Pinterest for some inspiration. The majority of people don't get in enough fruits or vegetables on a daily basis. The vitamins and minerals in these foods are essential for maintaining a healthy immune system, among many other things.

8. Stay Social

Just because you're practicing social distancing it doesn't mean you have to stop being social. While you shouldn't be going out of the house and meeting in public areas with your friends, we have state-of-the-art communicative technology right at our fingertips.

Spend some time each day video-chatting with your friends who you can't go out and see. Text messaging and emailing are not the same. You need to hear voices and see faces.

Additionally, social distancing may present a fantastic opportunity to spend more time with the members of your own household. Time goes by too fast. Our kids grow up and move out and we grow old in the blink of an eye.

Slow down and take a moment to be grateful for the people around you. Human beings are social creatures by design. We need human interaction to thrive and maintain a healthy mind and body.

Want More Tips on Maintaining a Healthy Mind and Body?

We can't predict the future any better than you can. With each passing day, it seems harder to determine what's going to happen with the Coronavirus.

We'd like to encourage you to accept the things going on that you can't change. However, there are plenty of things, like maintaining a healthy mind and body, that you have total control over. Check out some of our other articles for more ideas on staying healthy and be sure to take a look at our skincare products before you go.

Let us know you're out there! Take a selfie of yourself in a clay mask and tag us on Instagram @nenaclaymask. Share your story with us about how you're staying healthy during social distancing!