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It’s not ideal to be asked to isolate for ten days in your bedroom or at home.  You could actually say “it totally sucks”. It can be quite the confronting experience for our mental health to stop and isolate especially when we are used to being on the go. Covid is something we’re all trying to avoid like the plague which in turn has been causing even more prolonged stress on our bodies and minds. Changing the narrative and making this a time to totally rest and replenish is key. Here are ten tips that got me through the days.

1. Cosy up and connect
Make your surroundings are as warm and inviting as possible no matter the size. Clean your space and keep your window open for ventilation. Keep in touch with your people via all the apps; WhatsApp, Instagram etc. Let them know how you’re holding up. Maybe connect with that dear friend you have been meaning to reach out to – now that you have the time. 


2. Settle in
Ask your friends and family to supply you with all the comforts you require. Extra duvets, healthy snacks, Kleenex, a kettle, face masks (the beauty kind), jigsaws, books and Netflix passwords.


3. Lounge about
Change from night attire to comfy day clothes to differentiate between day and night when you’re isolating. Be more cat like and take all the naps. Rest and sleep are key to recovery and just what your body needs.


4. Hob-be
We often have hobbies that we USED to enjoy doing so this may be a good time to reengage with an old hobby. Like an old friend. Hobbies are a wonderful gateway to the present moment and our bodies relax and become connected when we engage in an activity that we enjoy “just for the fun of it”. If you don’t know where to start, why not grab a paper and pen and write down all the hobbies that you used to enjoy, that you currently enjoy and ones that you would love to try. Tear these up into bits of paper and choose a different one every day. If you don’t have all the materials needed to do a certain hobby fear not, spend that time researching it or ordering what you do need online so that you will have that to look forward to once it arrives. 


5. Movement breaks
Give yourself a couple of minutes of stretching, shaking or even try an online class daily. When you wake in the mornings and before you go to bed try a tapping exercise to ground into your body and out of the busy mind.  If you’ve ever been in a yoga class with me you know this one. Tap all around the hairline and face and slowly move down your body all the way to your feet.


6. Diaphragmatic breathing
Deep breathing down into our abdomen helps to switch from fight or flight into that restful place of peace and ease. If you can spend a few minutes here and there checking in with your breathing and deliberately slowing it down you’ll notice a difference in your mind state. Your body will thank you for it too.


7. Nourish
It’s a virus so it’s a good idea to eat plenty fruit and veg to build up your body’s natural immunity. May as well eat well to stay well. I almost forgot chocolate. Lots of chocolate. Chocolate is an viruses enemy and our best friend – maybe don’t check that one with a scientist! 


8. Hydrate
Having access to a kettle was a game changer for me. Or use a refillable water bottle and aim to drink plenty every day – set yourself a goal and reward yourself for reaching it.


9. Go easy on yourself
This is hard. When we slow down and stop we may meet difficult emotions and feelings. Keep a journal and try writing your thoughts down. Having some self-compassion towards yourself will go a long way. You can be compassionate towards yourself when struggling by placing the soft touch of your own hand anywhere on your body (maybe your heart) and internally recite “this is a tough moment I am here for you” Take comfort in your own touch. This is powerful.


10. Impermanence
This too shall pass. We won’t be here forever so make this time about you and replenishing your mind, heart and body. If you are feeling lonely or want to connect with a community do reach out to your CRAOI community on instagram (@craoi_theory) – we are here to offer support and right now quite of few of us have  had the experience of what lockdown feels like over the past few weeks,  so we can certainly relate. 


See you on the other side! 🙂 

Author: Kathryn Sheehan 

About: Kathryn (or Kitty as her friends and family know her) is a mental health worker, promoting positive mental health through yoga, mindfulness and life tools. As a Yoga and Mindfulness teacher she holds multiple qualifications across a range of different styles and learning techniques, making her a well rounded and amazing teacher and one of our exclusive Mindfulness & Movement Partners for CRAOI.