These are scary times, but they needn’t be! You have all the help you need. Just take a step back and revaluate. In these times where resources are scarce, it has become more critical than ever to reevaluate your resources and make the best use of limited means and explore contentedness in what you have. It is easy to panic when restrictions are imposed, even though you do not always need the things you panic about. It is human tendency to fight against restraint. In this case, you need to remind yourself that these restrictions are to keep you safe. 

 

Realise and Revaluate 

This is the perfect time to recognise the difference between want and need. This will help you realise how much money, time and attention you can actually save during this time. Resources do not only mean food essentials, but also hobby items. Always plan your purchases ahead. When shopping for food essentials, what helps is weekly meal planning. Next time you go food shopping, carry a list of ingredients for your meals! Stock up (but do not hoard) on non-perishables like rice, lentils, grams, cereals, eggs, tea/coffee (is a must for me!), maybe even durable basic vegetables like onions, potatoes and garlic and pick up perishables weekly. There, easy! 

 

Photo by Allie on Unsplash

You have the time to get creative. Make that recipe that you saw online but didn’t have the time to make earlier! Add that to your ingredients’ list for next time and practice for your imaginary “Masterchef” competition! Make things fun. Try new ingredient combinations to make a different dish every day. Another problem that people are facing these days is binge eating because they are bored, stressed, depressed. Remember that this will add to all those feelings. Instead try to use this time to detox, physically and mentally. A clean body is a key to a clean mind. Use this time to make healthier recipes. Time your meals, include small mid-meal snacks to prevent cravings.  

A lot of you must be online shopping. Before you hit the ‘confirm order’ button, stop and think if you really need it? Will you be wearing that dress in the next month, locked down at home? NO! How much money would add up in savings if you didn’t place the online orders you are contemplating? Small changes can amount to one big change. 

You will discover that most things you were spending your time, thoughts and money on have cheaper and better alternatives. 

 

Journey to Contentedness 

The key to turning panic and anxiety is pausing and taking a step back. Isolating the causes that are causing anxiety and eliminating them one at a time. Focusing on what you do have instead of what you don’t. Most of us (unfortunately not all) have a roof over our heads, a full stomach, support of family and loved ones, friends, a job to fall back on, skills and hobbies, (god bless) the internet and so much more. Appreciate them. 

I can not stress the importance of staying active, physically and mentally. A workout does not need a gym. There are plenty of available options on the internet for body-weight exercises at home. Meditate to calm your mind. Practise Yoga. Just move a little every day. Bless the internet. Learn a new skill or language online. 

To summarise appreciate what you have including the people around you. This time has made people realise the people closest to them. The people you call most frequently or in some cases the happiness you get from spending this time with your family or partner instead of socialising with a thousand acquaintances. 

 

Alone Together 

Photo by visuals on Unsplash

This time has brought the whole world together. Everyone is ‘isolated’ but together in that too. Regardless of nationality, race, gender or age, everyone is facing the same circumstances. Someone always has it worse than you even if it doesn’t seem so always. Some people are homeless, penniless, far away from family and partners and isolating alone! Think of this when you feel lonely or alone. Find contentedness. When you go shopping, remember not to hoard. You just need what is in your list. Leave something for others in more need. 

And always remember, this too shall pass. 

 

 

Author:

Aditi Sinha
Counsellor and Psychotherapist at HealingClouds
To learn more about making the most of the lockdown, you can book a therapy session with Aditi here.