The ongoing crisis we’re living in has placed the entire world under infinite stress and doubt. While things seem to be in shambles, it has also put a lot into perspective. For some, it has realigned their priorities and helped many stay positive and accept the finer things in life.
Several students are stranded overseas away from their families, and many businessmen are stuck in foreign countries all alone. In short, things could’ve turned out a lot worse for us. But instead, most of us are contained in our homes and getting to spend a lot of time with our families or loved ones. Circumstances like these make you realize the value of life and the good it offers.
After the last couple of months, most of us would have a list of things we once took for granted but now can’t live without or miss deeply. This could include places, things, people, and activities that you’ve established a recent appreciation and gratitude for.
Practicing gratitude and mindfulness during a pandemic can be extremely challenging, but acknowledging even the smallest luxury in our daily lives can help us become more humble and grateful. The following tips can help you stay positive and more grateful for the things in your life despite the pandemic.
1. Start a Gratitude Journal!
To put it plainly, a gratitude journal is a diary where one can write down any and every positive thing in their life. Given the current situation, people must focus on positive aspects, whether big or small.
You start by jotting down even the simplest of things that had a positive impact on your day, you’ll find yourself feeling happier and lighter. Whether it’s something as ordinary as teaching your pet a new trick or watching a flower bloom in your backyard – if it made you feel good, then it should go in your journal.
Times like now, it’s hard to find a permanent pick-me-up, but making a habit of jotting down many small or one big positive events in your day can entirely transform your outlook on life. Gratitude journaling is known to boost mental and physical health and teach individuals to be more grateful for the things they’re blessed with.
Later down the line, when you return to your journal, you’ll find an abundance of inspiring material to look back on and restore your spirits. By taking the time to focus on the positives, you’re eliminating the hold negative thoughts have on your attitude and conditioning your mind to be more optimistic.
This way, no matter how big or small the moment, it will help you feel real joy and happiness. Right now, we need to hold on tight and stay positive in order to get through this. If we keep pondering on our worries and tensions, they can cause adverse effects on our health and make us unproductive and lethargic.
Therefore, investing time in gratitude journaling can help people counter stress and foster a sense of appreciation within them.
2. Slow Down and Notice Everything around You
It’s so easy to get caught up in all the craziness of things that we forget to slow down and take a breather. People are drowning themselves in work and taking up more tasks than usual, so they don’t have to think about the global pandemic happening outside. However, this can only take you farther away from appreciating all that you’re blessed with.
Busying yourself with work assignments and chores can act as great distractions, but they’re only temporary. The pressure to keep busy is strong, and we’re all grasping to find any normalcy in our routines. However, if you’re finding yourself unable to complete tasks successfully and struggling with the simplest of chores, then it’s recommended to take things slow for a bit.
Take some time out to sit and do nothing. It allows you to come to terms with how you’re feeling and the thoughts running through your head. Try to focus on the task you’re performing, even if it’s something as simple as trimming your nail. Pay attention to what you’re feeling at that moment and process it.
If you feel overwhelmed, stressed, frustrated – voice it out, so you’re acknowledging what you’re going through. Slowing down your routine and simply letting your mind go through the motions helps you accept the situation for what it is and come to terms with your emotions. When you accept the way you feel and allow yourself to experience different sentiments, it helps you stay grounded and stay positive amid such a stressful time.
3. Start Your Day Intentionally
Everyone’s first instinct after getting out of bed is to check their phones for updates on the Coronavirus, regardless of the impact on our mental health. A lot of us fail to understand that this is one of the main causes triggering our anxiety. This heavy obligation on our shoulders to check the news repeatedly throughout the day can immediately affect our moods and induce a sense of dread in the back of our minds.
But realistically, unless you’re stepping out of the house, there is no need to subject yourself to any triggering information and soil your day-to-day plans. Try to begin your day on the right foot by spending some time focusing on the present and think about all the things you’re thankful for. To get through these trying times, we must stay grounded, stay positive, and process both – the ups and downs of every day, so we’re able to deal with every emotion head-on.
Whether you wake up feeling happy, satisfied, grievous, or angry, try to come to terms with the fact that you will get through the day no matter how you feel. Once you’ve mentally prepared yourself to begin the day, you can easily face whatever that’s going on around you. Then go about your activities as you usually do. Put some music on or a motivational podcast and carry out the tasks that you intended to complete that day.
4. Engage in Activities that Make you Happy
While the fear of infection is restricting us from doing a lot of things, it can not hold us back from ding what we love. Can’t go out to the restaurant with your friends? Don’t worry, have a Zoom dinner with your friends and enjoy friendly banter to uplift your spirit. Amid the chaos, it will make you be positive and realize what a blessing it is to be healthy and alive.
Can’t go to the movies with your boyfriend? Have a romantic date night at home and watch some Netflix. Similarly, you can play online games, visit museums online, and pick up new hobbies to stay positive and energized. You can also take a skill that you have and turn it into a social welfare project.
For instance, many people who are good at stitching have started making masks for their friends, family, community hospitals, and shelters, etc. Many clothing companies are making PPE gear for frontline workers, and alcoholic beverage companies are making freehand sanitizers.
Similarly, a cleaning company in England is offering expert cleaning tops to its clients to keep them safe during COVID-19. You, too, can take a leaf out of their books and use your skill to spread some joy. Make a home-cooked meal fro your local front line workers, donate to your favourite charity, volunteer in any capacity you can. This will make you appreciate your life and stay positive.
5. Take Time to Self-Reflect
This is the perfect time to gain a sense of purpose in life and align our priorities, whether it’s our personal or professional life. Self-reflection helps you analyze your thoughts, beliefs, and emotions on a deeper level, allowing you to truly grow and mature.
Now that we’re all quarantined at home, it has allowed us to turn to our families and loved ones and appreciate the things we’ve been neglecting. You get to evaluate how, where, and with whom you spend all your time and if that brings us any comfort. When you start digging deeper, you begin to see things from a different perspective and gain a newfound respect for all that is around you.
Finding inspiration in little things, even when you’re stuck in one place – physically and mentally – helps you grow as a person and teaches you to be appreciative of all that you’re blessed with.
When you look around you, you’ll realize that there is so much to be thankful for even during a global crisis. Pausing and counting the infinite positives in your life can help you unlock benefits that will help you beyond the pandemic as well. Tuning out the negatives and focusing on silver linings will boost your immunity and strengthen your mental health, making you a healthier and productive individual.
What are you doing to stay positive? We would love to hear your thoughts!