By Moses Charedzera
In line with the lockdown enforced by government due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many people are staying home while some have made the home their temporary workplace.
The coronavirus has introduced a new lifestyle for millions of people, disrupting time honoured routines. Many families have busy schedules with each member of the family out and about doing their own thing.
Coronavirus has restricted certain freedoms which we took for granted, such as visiting folks when we feel like, going shopping, mixing freely with relatives, friends, colleagues, workmates and churchmates among other groups.
The sudden change to these well-establishedroutines are bound to affect most and could even impact on wellness and health.
Generally being gregarious, Zimbabweans are now confined to what many will feel are claustrophobic spaces and with statistics indicating cases are rising, it could be some time before we regain our cherished routines and freedoms.
In the meantime, wellness experts are suggesting the following to get day by day.
1.Focus on Breathing
Soon after waking up, take a few minutes to really focus on your breathing. There is a technique called 4-7-8 breathing, or relaxing breath, which helps you concentrate on deep breaths. The practice is simple: Breathe in for a count of 4, hold for a count of 7 and breathe out for a count of 8. Practising this for four breaths four times each day or more can help relieve anxiety and reset the autonomic nervous system.
2. Moving and Stretching, Indoors and Outdoors
Staying active can increase immunity and boost mental health. Try 10 minutes of movements that help you practice mindfulness — or use stretches and to bring your awareness back into your body.
3. Jogging and Gardening
Gardening and jogging outdoors, and taking notice of the natural world, helps alleviate anxiety and improve well-being. Home air can get stuffy and getting outside each day for 15 minutes of fresh air and sunshine, also helps the body make vitamin D.
4. Eating Well
Good nutrition is essential in stressful timesand this helps to boost immunity. It is recommended to eat at meals rich in plant-based foods, especially leafy vegetables and fruit. Fruits like lemon and oranges are also a good source of vitamin C which boosts immunity against coronavirus.
5. Avoid Bad Foods
Taking steps to cut out inflammatory foods such as sugar and bad fats is a good idea. These foods might be more tempting when you’re feeling tense or worried. Cook homemade foods with ginger and turmeric. A little rosemary can be good for focus. Also drink plenty of water, and consider green or black tea.
For those who are working from home:
6. Keep In Touch With Nature
Bring in something from outdoors for your at-home desk. Rocks, branches, flowers, even a picture, photograph or screen saver depicting a beautiful, calming scene can help remind you of nature.
7. Don’t Forget the Power of Music.
Listening to music that inspires you can help you focus and improve your mood.
8. Consume Social Media Conservatively.
There is a lot of misinformation and disinformation in social media and some posts can cause alarm. Double check with trusted news sources before you swallow in hook, line and sinker everything you hear or read about COVID-19.
9. Keep in Touch
It’s also important to keep in touch with relatives, friends, workmates and colleaguesespecially the ones who uplift you during this challenging time. For Christians, keeping in touch with church leaders will help boost spiritual strength.
10. Build Family Unit.
Because of the hustle and bustle of modern families, family members rarely have time to sit down together and strengthen family ties. The lockdown gives an opportunity for families to renew bonds and come closer through real chatting, games, exercises, work and prayer.