As the days blend one into another and our choice of activities become restricted due to social distancing as well as increase demands at home for those with aging parents or school aged children, we must become ever cognizant of our moods and our response to external stressors. We must find ways to remain mentally healthy to be able to stand tall through the storms of life.
Here are 4 tips that help me achieve peace and relaxation in a world full of turmoil.
Çay/ Ocha / Teatime
I recall my days abroad in the UK where teatime is a way of life – here like in many other country’s like Turkey and Japan where tea is not just a beverage but rather an integral part of the culture and longstanding tradition of consuming a perfectly brewed cup of tea with family and others. I too became enthralled with the notion of afternoon tea. A nice relaxing conversation at the park with my friends over a cup of (my favorite raspberry) tea- the break always gave me something to look forward to; these days with the pandemic the ritual is even more important as it provides an outlet to decompression from the day’s activities particularly from the virtual meeting overload. To make it more special I prefer to use my favorite porcelain tea. As I sip it in my favorite chair by the window, I am immediately transported to grand days I spent at the Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria, BC
If you do not like tea you can do a cup of coffee or hot cocoa – all of these can restore energy and allow you to be more productive.
Cooking & Singing Out loud
This is one of my all-time favorite activities to do especially in the middle of the night when everything is so serene, and I am wound up and awake.
I like to try new recipes especially desserts – as I mix, measure and pour, I like to crank up the volume of my favorite eclectic playlist that includes anything with a beat ranging from Brazilian to African drums to the sounds of a great guitarron (deep body guitar with 6 strings) and vihuela being (smaller figure 8 guitar played like a lute) played by a Mariachi.
Upgrade the Everyday
I am sure all of us have fancy dishes and things we “save” for special occasions but in this day and age with so many unprecedented events happening in our communities, enjoying a meal in fancy plates not only gives us a sense of calm but also provides an escape from the mundane. After all beautiful things are meant to be enjoyed transforming ordinary chicken spaghetti to a culinary masterpiece.
Tidy up your purse
Nothing calms the boredom and stress down like a good cleaning -after all ‘cleanliness is next to godliness’. One of my favorite things to do to break the monotony is to dump all the contents of my purse on the sofa and reorganize all its contents in a perfect pristine order (although short lived it is extremely satisfying) and for a moment no matter how brief ; we feel like we have achieved control over our own world. (You may also have same sense of accomplishment organizing your pills for the week or the month).
In the end, it is up to you to find your own way of calming yourself whether it is by using any of the above tips or creating your own. The key is allowing yourself to be in touch with your senses using sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste. It may take a few trials to hit the right note but keep trying new things to engage yourself in and forget for a few moments the worries of the day. Sometimes being so far out of our own comfort zone helps us focus on what is important by clearing our minds and providing us with a brand-new perspective. Yes! It took a world pandemic to make me enjoy being an active participant in the culinary arts. So, who knows what hidden gems deep diving into relaxation activities can unveil about yourself?
All Rights reserved By Maria De Leon (a.k.a Parkinson’s Diva)