This comes from my friend Karin Laing who lives on the beautiful island of Gozo, near Malta in the Mediterranean. She is an experienced therapist and counsellor, giving support to many people. What she writes here is a really positive way to see our 'enforced time off' during the virus challenge, and provides a plan for turning this time into an uplifting one:
6 Tips for Creating a Daily Wellbeing Plan
“Health is not just being disease-free. Health is when every cell in your body is bouncing with joy.” ~ Sadhguru
Many of us might be feeling sad, calm, bored, stressed, frustrated, relaxed, lonely, anxious and all of these things at the same time. We could be on our own or be with our family, a partner or children and possibly feel overwhelmed at the prospect of this situation carrying on for several more weeks.
To help us cope I suggest that we each create a Daily Wellbeing Plan for ourselves and the ones that are with us.
By implementing this Daily Wellbeing Plan to run every day you can actualize a life where you allow, create, expand and invite what you desire and get the most out of every day. This will give you freedom to do the things you love and spend quality time with the people most important to you.
1) Create a Morning Ritual
Morning time is a sacred time for me. Imagine as the alarm goes off you invite this to become your ritual time where you have space to do the activities you don’t have time to do when you are travelling to work. If you are living with your family make them part of your morning ritual.
i) Start Your Day with an Early Morning Meditation
Invite the new day in the right way with a morning meditation. It’s a great way to energize you, set an intention for the day and find the peace and strength you need to make the most of your day.
You can meditate lying in your bed before you get up. Or sitting in a comfortable chair in a quiet space. Whichever you prefer. A 10-minute meditation is enough to start your day well, but choose whatever length works best for you.
If you are new to meditation or have a hard time staying focused on your breathing, I’ve made a free audio guided morning meditation that you can play here or by clicking on the embedded clip, below or to the right.
ii) Vitalize with a Glass of Water
Start your day with a glass (at least 300 ml) of water (ideally room temperature) with a dash of lemon juice and a pinch (1/4 tsp) of Himalayan salt. We all know that water is essential to life and your body’s internal functions, but these three ingredients yield powerful results when combined and ingested first thing in the morning.
The lemon provides your gut and stomach the acidity it requires for digestive functions throughout the day. And the mineral salt provides electrolytes and minerals critical for normal cell function.
iii) Start an Inspiration Journal
Write five to ten intentions in your journal. Ask yourself “What would I like to create?” or “What new skill or hobby would I like to learn more about?” Take the first step and be inspired to dream and visualize.
Write as if your vision has already happened. Write for ten minutes.
Karin Laing - Spiritual Healing practitioner, Healing Retreats, Malta & Gozo
iv) Spend 15 to 30 Minutes Exercising
Whether it’s Yoga or Pilates, HIIT, Stretching or Strength Training – YouTube is packed full of free videos of exercises you can do at home without any equipment. If you don’t regularly exercise, start off slow. Even if it’s only 5 minutes the first day.
v) Get Ready to Meet the Day
Have a shower. Get dressed. Ladies – do your hair and makeup.
Whether you are working from home, home-schooling your kids, or have your days completely free – changing out of your pyjamas psychologically sets you in the right mindset for a productive day.
Whereas staying in your pyjamas all day has been scientifically proven to disrupt both your sleep (as you lose your night-time ritual) and your day-time productivity.
vi) Have Breakfast as a Family
They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. And for many of us with busy lives we never have the opportunity to sit down and enjoy breakfast as a family, even if that family consists of you and your cat.
Eat slowly. Talk about your goals for the day. Wash the dishes when you’re done.
2) Start Your ‘Workday’
i) Create a Designated Workspace
If you are working from home for the first time, make sure you set aside a space in the house that you designate for your office time. If you don’t have an office space or a spare room to use, designate a section of the dining room table or breakfast counter as your space.
Do the same for each member of your family. So each person has their own work space for the day. This is your sacred space where no one can interrupt you or invade your space until your pre-arranged break times.
Working from home with children - designating a work space
ii) Create Your Work Plan
Create a work plan for the day (or week) ahead. Like a school timetable, draw up a plan for how to divide your days. With specific times to start, times for breaks and lunch etc.
Every ninety minutes you should have a fifteen-minute break. Have a walk around. Do some stretches. Have a cup of tea or coffee (and a glass of water). Have a snack.
Agree with your family that you will each work quietly in your space for designated blocks of time so that each person has their own quiet, alone time, despite being crowded in one space.
iii) Learn a New Skill or Hobby
If you are not working, use your work time to learn a new skill or hobby. With much of the world on lockdown or practicing social distancing, there are many more free online courses than ever before.
Write down a list of things you’d like to try, give each one a go for the first few days – then settle on three or less that you will spend your time on in the coming weeks.
iv) Set Aside Time for Family and Friends
Set aside time in your daily work plan to chat with family and friends. Remember that messaging and sharing memes does not provide anywhere near the same level of connection as hearing someone’s voice. Or better still, a video chat.
Be mindful of those who are alone and make a schedule to check in often. Use this time to open up and re-kindle deep connections with family and friends that have often been lost in today’s digital world.
Don’t forget to include colleagues that may not have their own family or support structure. If you are one of those people, don’t be afraid to reach out to the people you know. Even if you don’t know them well, this is a good time to make deeper connections.
Include sharing meals over video chat in your Daily Wellbeing Plan
3) Plan and Prepare Meals
i) Get Everyone Involved
As a family, or on your own, plan your meals for the next 3 to 5 days. If you have children (or a non-culinary partner), this is the perfect opportunity for them to learn to cook.
Now, more than ever, we can focus on less wastage. Use this time to be creative with leftovers and planning consecutive meals with many of the same ingredients.
plan and prepare meals as a family as part of your daily wellbeing plan
ii) Learn to Cook
Sign up for free online cooking classes as a family – especially those that use everyday household ingredients.
Get creative and adapt recipes to what you have available in the house. This can be a fun, creative exercise for the whole family. If you’re a fan of MasterChef® you’ll know about the Mystery Box Challenge.
If not, it’s simple … the ‘judge’ chooses a box of 10 ingredients that the ‘competitor(s)’ must use to make the most delicious meal possible. The more competent cooks in your family can take turns in cooking dinners from the ‘mystery box’ set out by other members of the family.
iii) Sit down as a Family
Set the table for each meal. Sit down as a family*. Put all your phones and technology away for the duration of the meal including turning off the TV.
Make sure your dinner table is always thought of as a positive and happy place that is open for communication. Positive energy at the table is an absolute must. Ask each person to share a happy memory, or something positive they have learned from this experience, or something they are looking forward to. Something they will keep in their routine going forward.
*If you are alone, arrange your mealtimes with a friend or group of friends. And use WhatsApp video, Skype or Zoom to virtually share your mealtime together.
4) Unwind After Your Day
Whatever time you plan to end your workday, set aside time for relaxation. If you have a garden or patio, take an hour to sit outside (otherwise open and sit by a window), away from your phone and other technology. Read a book. Write in your journal. Listen to music. Paint or draw.
This exercise will help to separate your workday from your ‘home time’ – even though they are in the same space.
5) Set a Night-time Ritual
A night-time ritual is as important as a morning one for your daily wellbeing plan. Be creative and use the time to play board games and other interactive family fun. If you’re alone – find some online games you can play with friends and family. Or use the time to video chat.
With more free time in your day, set aside at least an hour before you sleep to disconnect from technology. Turn off the TV. Put away your phone.
Use the time to have a relaxing bath or knit, read a book, play offline games like cards, Sudoku or a crossword.
Before you fall asleep, open your inspiration journal. Congratulate yourself on being a bit closer to making your goals a reality.
Write down three things that you are grateful for.
After a day of inspiration and following your Daily Wellbeing plan you’ve earned a good night’s rest.
spend time reading away from technology
6) Ask For Help When You Need It
Working through each of these steps in the daily wellbeing plan will help bring a sense of order and unity, and start a healthy new daily routine.
In this unprecedented time in our lives, it’s important to know when to reach out and ask for help.
PLEASE FEEL FREE TO FORWARD THIS ARTICLE AND NETWORK IT FAR AND WIDE. There are many who will benefit from its support in this challenging time!
ABOUT Karin Laing: For over 5 years Karin has offered online counselling and therapy sessions to clients across the globe including Spiritual Healing, Intuitive Counselling and Hypnotherapy for anxiety, fears and phobias, trauma, grief, loss and relationship challenges. Now, she is also applying her expertise to Quarantine Support.
Karin is a licensed and certified Transpersonal Hypnotherapist based in Gozo (Malta). She lives in and works from L’Għarix Temple Retreat which is a 750 year old villa in Xagħra, Gozo. It is built a hundred metres behind the Ggantija temples which are recognised by UNESCO as the oldest freestanding buildings in the world. L’Għarix has it’s own private and sacred cave where group sessions and workshops, and guided meditations are conducted. A wonderful place for such events!
You can schedule a Skype, Facetime or WhatsApp session with Karin today and she will support you to take back control of your life and gain clarity on how to move forward.
Send a WhatsApp to +356 9954 7131 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Karin Laing - online therapy help Malta and worldwide - including specific quarantine therapy. See also https://karinlaing.com/
Article by Karin Laing|March 30th, 2020|Inspiration, Mindfulness