As we continue pushing our way through this season of quarantine, we need to keep in mind that this period of time may not be as temporary as it first seemed. This sounds daunting, but it is actually the perfect time to put some new healthy habits into practice for the wellbeing of you and your loved ones.
It is easy to fall into a routine in life; sometimes, routines are what get us through hectic days of work, family, school, and whatever else life has to throw at us. Covid19 has certainly disrupted a lot of people’s routines. Did you ever stop to think that a new routine or ritual might be just what you need for a fresh start?
This week we’re bringing you a list of simple, easy ways to twist up your daily ritual in quarantine. Working or going to school from home doesn’t have to be a dreaded experience if you give yourself something to look forward to!
1. Wake Up Early
The sooner you expose yourself to sunlight in the morning, the sooner your brain is stimulated and energized. Start off your day a little early, and treat yourself to a delicious breakfast or a fresh cup of coffee.
When you start your day off doing something that makes you happy, you will feel more in control over what you do throughout your day. This is especially important when you are completing your whole day of work or school in the same environment.
Better yet, if you’re looking for a way to improve your mood and be more productive, waking up early could be the perfect solution for you. Research conducted by the Universities of Birmingham and Surrey has shown that individuals who adopted the habit of waking up early experienced feeling less stressed and depressed.
Take a look at this article by Global News to learn more about healthy morning routine habits.
Gardening is one of the best additions to your daily routine. Adding gardening into your daily ritual is a great way to improve your mood, take a moment of peace, get your hands dirty, and spend some time outside. All of these things contribute to having a better day all around.
Gardening is a fabulous way to break up your day if you are working or going to school from home during quarantine. Take a look at this article to learn why going back to school with your garden can help you stay happy and focused while working.
3. Practice Deep Breathing + Meditation
If you are feeling stressed, or you are looking for a way to prioritize a clear mind and relaxation, turn to meditation and deep breathing.
Taking deep breaths can slow your heart rate, and is a great way to settle from anxiety. Deep breathing is a regular part of classic meditation practices, and it is a good way to refocus your energy away from a busy mind.
Meditation can take many forms, depending on who is practicing the meditation. Meditation does not have to involve sitting cross-legged with atmospheric music playing in the background (although this is a fantastic method for practicing meditation). Meditation involves developing and honoring a practice which brings you peace of mind, tranquility and focus.
Gardening can be a very useful meditative tool. Take a look at this interview with mental health expert, Quentin Vinnie, to learn how you can meditate in your gardening practice.
4. Learn a New Language
Keeping the brain engaged with something new and exciting is an excellent way to avoid boredom during quarantine. With social media and the news always at our fingertips, it is easy to fall into an obsession with that accessibility. Try occupying your time by learning something new, like a new language!
If you want to learn a new language, but don’t know where to start, try using the app called Duolingo. This application works both on your smartphone or tablet, and on your computer. You can find more information about Duolingo here.
5. Make a New Playlist
Music is a powerful tool that can help fire up your mind for better short-term memory, a better mood, and relieve stress. While you’re spending time at home during quarantine, set the mood of your environment by making a fun, new quarantine playlist.
If you’re working from home or attending school from home, you can really mix things up by making a new playlist for yourself every week.
It’s important to give yourself small gifts, such as putting together a new mix of music, because it gives you an opportunity to enjoy your time and feel excited about something. Making the habit of doing kind things for yourself is a terrific routine to adopt during quarantine.
If you want to learn more about how music affects our health, check out this article that was published by Harvard University.
6. Clean Out Your Closet
The time to clean out your closet has finally arrived; the one task that always seems to be able to wait for a rainy day. While you’re spending so much time in your home and bedroom space during quarantine, clean out the cobwebs, and get rid of the things you’re not using.
Cleaning out your closet is an excellent way to feel productive, reduce clutter, and give back to your community by donating your old clothing and items. Follow the one year rule; if you haven’t worn it or used it for one year, get rid of it! Simple. You will feel so much better without an excess of unused things taking up your space.
If you are donating clothes, make sure to wash them before you take them to any donation centers. This way, you are doing your part in preventing the spread of germs, while also contributing to the community.
7. Dry Your Herbs
By this time in quarantine, your herb garden is flourishing. How exciting! There are so many ways to put those fresh herbs to use, and one way to make them last is to dry them and turn them into spices.
Drying your herbs allows you to use them and their delicious flavors for a longer period of time. For an extra bit of fun, you can put them in cute jars with labels and double their function as kitchen decorations, too.
This is a great healthy habit to adopt during quarantine because it gets you out in your garden, helps you to consume more herbs (super healthy!) AND you get to enjoy the benefits of something that you’ve grown.
Take a look at this article from HGTV for three different ways to dry your herbs at home.
8. Start a Journal
Sometimes life is just plain chaotic and overwhelming; especially in quarantine, stress and other negative feelings can feel particularly heavy. A good way to sort out your emotions, thoughts and experiences is by writing them down in a journal.
Journaling helps you to organize what you experience in a day, as well as to decipher things that may feel overwhelming or confusing. Writing in a journal can also feel like a cleanse or a detox, which is a fantastic way to let off steam after a long day of school or work from home.
Writing down happy and exciting experiences in your journal is also a lovely habit to get into! This practice allows you to prioritize your moments of happiness, and relive them as you write them down. It’s a win-win situation. One of our favorite journals to share with friends is by Marie Mae Company. The “Write With Purpose” Signature Spiral Notebook is ideal for self journaling or gifting. (Plus we love the brains and mission behind the brand.)
9. Eat with your Family
Family dinner is a great way to bond and spend consistent time together. The dinner table is a place where you can share stories from the day, laugh together, and enjoy each other’s company.
Dinner is a fantastic time to prioritize family time. On top of all of the bonding benefits, you get to enjoy the preparation of your meal by using fresh ingredients from your garden. Making something together is almost as enjoyable as eating that delicious creation together.
If you live alone, dinner is still a great experience to prioritize; studies from The Sleep Doctor show that having a regular eating schedule (especially at night) is a fantastic, healthy habit to adopt in order to get a better night of sleep.
10. Make a Sleep Schedule
Creating a consistent and healthy sleep schedule is not an easy task, but it is one that you are capable of accomplishing during quarantine. Everything that you do and consume throughout your day has the potential to affect the amount and the quality of sleep that you get at night.
If you are having trouble sleeping or staying asleep, try waking up and going to sleep at the same time every night. This consistency helps regulate your circadian rhythms, which are what dictate our sleep cycles.
If you want to learn more about getting a better night’s sleep, take a look at how herbs can affect your sleeping habits.