How Americans are Practicing Self-Care in the Age of Quarantine

For the millions of Americans who are quarantining at home, self-care has been pushed to the back burner. But think twice before you decide to neglect your own physical and emotional well-being. During times like these, self-care is a vital necessity (and welcome relief from the problems of the outside world).

Practical Ways to Prioritize Self-Care

It’s easy to become so anxious and fearful about this virus that you let it paralyze you. But wallowing in apprehension will get you nowhere fast. In fact, it actually suppresses your body’s immune system and makes it more difficult for you to fight off infections and diseases.

One of the best ways to side-step anxiety and fear is to apply healthy heapings of self-care. And here are a few recommended ways you can accomplish this in the midst of self-isolation and quarantine:

1. Exercise at Home

While it’s always preferable to exercise outside or in a place where you can socialize with others, you don’t have to leave your home to get some exercise.

There are plenty of easy, yet effective exercises you can perform in the comfort of your own living room. These include bodyweight exercises (like pushups and sit-ups), aerobic exercises (like jumping jacks), and other low-impact exercises.

Try to get at least 30 minutes of physical exercise per day. This will get your heart rate up and the blood flowing. It’ll also release endorphins into your brain, which trigger positive feelings of happiness.

2. Take Online Yoga Classes

Yoga is one of the best low-impact exercises you can do. It also happens to be one of the easiest to perform at home in a bedroom, living room, or patio.

While there are plenty of ways to perform your own yoga workout session without an instructor, sometimes it’s nice to have a friendly voice leading you through the workout. YouTube is great for this.

There are more than 254 million yoga videos on YouTube, but Well+Good has compiled a list of the eight best instructors for your convenience. This includes people like Adriene Mishler, Jessamyn Stanely, Tara Stiles, and Faith Hunter (who also incorporates a lot of good meditation aspects into her workouts). Find one you like and try doing some daily yoga to stretch your mind and body.

3. Schedule Online Therapy Appointments

The COVID-19 crisis has been stressful for all of us. Whether you’re located in one of the epicenters, or you’re spread out in America’s heartland, we’ve all been affected in one way or another. We either know someone who has been sick, we’ve lost a job, or we’ve had our lifestyle totally flipped on its head – or perhaps all three!

Sometimes you just need to talk to someone about what’s happening in your life so that you can process it in a healthy manner. Thankfully, some mental health professionals are still offering online therapy services. All you need is an internet connection and a private place in your home to participate.

4. Practice Mindfulness and Meditation

Mindfulness isn’t something we tend to practice much in our fast-paced American culture, but times are changing. You suddenly have more time on your hands than you ever thought possible. So why not be purposeful with some of this time?

Practicing mindfulness and meditation is an easy way to center yourself, calm your anxious fears, and selectively focus on positive thoughts that edify your being (rather than eviscerate it).

5. Get Plenty of Sleep

Let’s talk shut-eye.

In a world (and country) where sleep is often viewed as a luxury, we’re now beginning to realize just how important and beneficial it is to get eight or more hours of sleep per night. (And we need it more than ever.)

Sleep doesn’t just prevent you from feeling tired the next day – it actually enhances your immune system, increases focus, stabilizes your emotions, and gives you the energy needed to invest in other forms of self-care (like exercise).

Don’t Neglect Your Well-Being

Your emotional well-being and mental health are just as important as your physical health – particularly at a time like this. Be attentive to your needs and don’t let a quarantine prevent you from practicing self-care.

Whether it’s exercising at home, meeting with a therapist virtually, or increasing the amount of quality sleep you get each night, there are countless ways you can care for your mind and body during these challenging times.

30 thoughts on “How Americans are Practicing Self-Care in the Age of Quarantine”

  1. I would make simple physical exercises with Chirp Wheel+ in the house, or in my backyard. It can stretch your body, and especially spine muscles. You can simply visit this Chirp Wheel review and read in what exact cases you need to train with it. It really helps with getting back pain relief, for any person, who uses it.

  2. Singing is very good to prevent contagion. It keeps others away from you. If they are far enough away not to hear you, they can’t infect you either.

  3. Weight training is dubious.

    From someone who has named themselves after the Shotput, a heavy iron weight used in sports.

  4. “Chi” taken literally as a mystical force is dubious as anything.

    “Chi” used as a mental shorthand to help visualize the combination of balance, momentum, muscular states, mental focus, neurological readiness etc. can be a very useful concept. As long as you don’t fall into the trap of starting to treat it as a real mystical force.

  5. Self care: eating a quart of Costco ice cream while watching Annie Hall.

    True Story: I came uncomfortably close to running in to Woody Allen in Spain a decade ago. He was eating in the same tapas bar as me. I wanted to walk by him “on my way to the restroom” and mention that his wife is hot but the body guard blocking the way had other ideas.

    Would have been the best Spanish vacay ever.

  6. Where are your references? Dubious because…?
    3 seconds finds this:
    3 more seconds:
    And I saw an article specifically on coronavirus patients leaving hospital with weak breathing muscles. I’ll see if I can find that…3 minutes. Don’t know why that was hard.
    “When a person goes on a ventilator, the muscles that typically handle their breathing start to atrophy within hours. Many patients are put on sedatives to make it easier for the machine to take over. But this immobilizes other parts of their body and leads to widespread weakness.”

  7. Don’t automatically dismiss all pretentious hipster douchebaggery until you give some of it a try. There is more to life than bud light and franks and beans

  8. I think calisthenics especially core exercises are excellent for balance.
    Stretching can be overdone and actually promote dislocation and such when exercising or laboring. And this is not bias from an inflexible person.
    I think it is useful for gymnasts, dancers, figure skating, parkour, American football, climbing, motocross, diving, trampoline (why I did a lot of stretching in the past) and spelunking. Possibly useful for plumbers and electricians if they work in areas with older homes with crawlspaces, or work where there are a lot of trailer parks (though plumbing under trailers is usually pretty accessible).

  9. Boy, that’s a lot of closed mindedness for a bunch who pride themselves on open scientific inquiry. Just saying :>/
    Some meditation and Qigong might open up the intuition and curiosity to still further exploration in these well validated healthful exercises.

  10. Self care is what you do on mental health days while eating avocado toast and looking for new K-dramas to binge watch.

  11. but so what? our schools, churches, family structures, private workplaces, and govt institutions create and foster a demographic population that is and will continue to be 75% sheep and 5% wolves. Both groups hate each other but need each other to exist since a numbers-domination of one group crashes the system, and its this system that creates the productivity and innovation that is, when taken together, world-class. Nothing except a total system re-boot will ever affect these numbers and still maintain a productivity/innovation ‘tension’ that otherwise makes an economy go. Praise it now for no other dynamic will bounce back from this covid and continue to outpace G20 world GDP for the coming years (the remaining 20% are beavers – under-paid, over-achievers, non-political, non-activist, mostly STEM, social-outliers but mostly high-functioning not-introverts; are not affected by systems much)

  12. A fast Vinyasa flow is great for cardio and many yoga poses force you to hold your body weight for strength. It also has many Breath exercises as a base core principle. A good studio teaches classes on all levels, covering a wide range of exercise techniques great for the body. It has practices that also help strengthen your mental health (meditation etc). The more esoteric practices benefit those who also those who look after their spiritual health. So don’t be so quick to denigrate Yoga – it tries to provide a well rounded path to being fully healthy.

    So “MindBreaker” – you could benefit from Yoga in ways that might surprise you if you can fit a few hours per week into your own exercise routines. Just keep an open mind.

  13. Centering your Chi is dubious. Stretching and working on balance are pretty solid fundamentals when paired with cardio and weights.

  14. I think that the quarantine has been an excellent opportunity to embrace your inner introvert – to peruse collecting, hoarding, bingeing, fixing, trolling, DLing, and personal library planning/ pruning. If ambitious: a language or skill-set. An exercise bike and noise-cancelling headphones can transport you figuratively anywhere for 15 to 60min per day – and it is low impact! Afternoon nap – 3am on Tuesday. You can do it all. Ideally, 50% routine (some regularity with meals, sleep, exercise, and the can) allows fun-productivity and maximum energy while still keeping a sense of healthy eating and predictable sleep patterns – its all about getting as many hours a day doing something you want. I just feel bad for those who didn’t save enough (or have heavy at-home workloads) to take this once-in-a-decade 4-8 week, post-apocalyptic-like holiday. I mean c’mon – everything works and everything else can still be delivered. Geez – Get-up at 10am, have a beer, check the covid-19 death stats, comment on each of your top 10 blogs, order Pad-Thai, DL the whole Marvel universe/ top 80s horror and sci-fi moveis for later, and figure out which depressed stock (maybe: Banks) to double your money on with your benefit check. Hating this time is like hating summer holiday because its raining outside.

  15. And consider singing if that will not cause others distress.

    Other’s can suck it up. If they don’t like my singing they shouldn’t come to church.

  16. Yoga is dubious. HIIT exercise, cardio, weight training, and core exercises are the real deal. And consider singing if that will not cause others distress. That can strengthen the diaphragm and other muscles involved in breathing…which could pay off if you catch this thing. And singing can be relaxing too.

  17. this lovey dovey new age BS.

    Get out and live your life as normal. You are being taken for a sheep. They talk about herd immunity but this is plain and simply herd mentality.

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