You don’t need a gym membership to stay active.
Unfortunately, diet culture likes to use media and advertisements to prey on our psychology. “Look here! Buy X product, do X workout, or try X diet to be healthy!” The stay-at-home call certainly caused a panic in me when I realized I wouldn’t have a gym. However, without quarantine, I wouldn’t have discovered yoga. I wouldn’t have started walking outside. I truly learned to unwind, slow down, as well as how to be active in a more enjoyable and intuitive manner.
Going outside does wonders for the mood.
When you get the same opportunities every day, you take it for granted. The pandemic took away my ability to freely go outside whenever I please. As a result, I appreciated being outside more. Sunlight exposure gives us a great immune-system booster of Vitamin D, and it can also improve creativity, focus, and cognition. You may even experience a positive change in mood after spending time in nature.
Social health is as integral to wellbeing as emotional health.
I found myself zooming with distant relatives, friends from college, and even professors after I had been socially isolating for months. Isolation from your normal level of social activity can rub off on your mood, and you may feel less productive and a shorter attention span when you feel socially under-stimulated. Social interaction thus plays an integral role in health and wellbeing.
Pleasure is not earned.
The demands of the pandemic called for everyone to slow down. No more going out, no more rush to attend meetings, no more demands from different social circles. Staying at home allowed me more time for myself and more opportunities to fill that time with self-care and rest. Rest and self-care are rights; they are not earned by having a “busy week.” Balance is key.
Less is more.
“Darn, no shopping, live music, movies or dining out” turned into “Yay! Baking and crafts, wine nights on zoom, and movies in the house!” Staying at home forced me to make use of the things I already have, rather than seeking stimulation from new materials, people, and events. I can now confidently bake a French baguette, make baba ghannouj with pita, and host weekly wine nights on zoom with friends while away from school.