10 Tips on How to Maintain a Routine of Kindness
The top tips below have been written by The Random Act of Kindness Foundation https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/
One of the things we know about times of crisis is that sticking to a routine is crucial to our own mental health. Here are 10 tips on how to maintain a routine of kindness during difficult times:
- Maintain a sleep schedule and manage your hygiene. This may be difficult for those working on the front lines, but remember that sleep is critical to wellness. Getting enough (continuous) sleep is so important! Keep up with your hygiene habits. Get showered, brush your teeth, wash your face, wear something other than pyjamas (even though they are so comfy!) and include bright colours in your daily wardrobe.
- Do good for others! When we help others and increase altruistic behaviour, we are doing good for ourselves. There is a LOT of evidence about the science of doing good and why it benefits our own health. Make sure that while you’re taking care of yourself, you’re doing what you can to support others.
- Get outside. Go for a walk. Play frisbee. Plant some flowers. Try to go for at least 30 minutes. If you can’t go outside, open the windows. Get fresh air and sunshine. Vitamin D is so important to our physical and mental health. Soak up some rays!
- Connect with others. Use your phone or platforms like FaceTime, Skype or Zoom to talk with family and friends. Share how you’re feeling and actively listen to others when they share how they are feeling.
- Spend a little extra time with your children and/or pets. They may be confused and/or scared. This is a great time to build stronger connections with those around you. Looking for ideas for things to do with your children? Keep children on a schedule as well. Let your children help with creating a daily schedule that includes academics, exercise, creative time, quiet time and time to connect with friends.
- Drink lots of water! Eat healthy. Often, during stressful times we over-indulge and don’t maintain a healthy diet. Use this time to re-evaluate your diet and try new recipes!
- Develop a self-care plan for yourself. Consider strategies that are proven to work well for many. Listen to music you love, burn a candle that smells good, write in your journal or read a book. When was the last time you coloured something? Get out the crayons and coloured pencils and colour a picture! Take a long warm bath. Start a craft project. Organise a room. Whatever feels good to you… do it and pat yourself on the back for taking care of yourself.
- Be kind. Everyone is doing their best right now. It is easy to be judgemental of how others are handling this challenging time, but know that we all operate a little differently. Offer a bit of grace to others during this time. Notice all the good things happening in the world right now. There are a ton of great things… just do a search online for “good news during Covid-19” and you’ll find a lot!
- Find a reason to smile every day. In fact, find a way to generate a good hearty belly laugh every day. It does a body good.
- Be grateful. There is SO MUCH to be grateful for right now. Practising gratitude builds resilience and helps us through the toughest times. Find three things every day that you are grateful for and write them down. Put the lists in a jar and look at your lists months from now to remind you of all the little reasons you were able to get through this period.
Talking to your Child about the Coronavirus
Children look to adults in their life for comfort when they are distressed and will take a lead on how to view things from you. Please see the 10 tips taken from the Young Minds website to support your family and you during this unsettling time.
- Try not to shield your child from the news, as it’s likely they will find out somehow from school, being online or from friends.
- Talk to your child about what is going on. You could start by asking them what they have heard.
- Try to answer their questions and reassure them in an age appropriate manner. Remember, you do not need to know all the answers but talking can help them feel calm.
- Reassure your child that it is unlikely they will get seriously ill and, if they do feel ill, you will look after them. Your child might be concerned about who will look after you if you catch the virus. Let them know the kind of support you have as an adult so that they don’t feel they need to worry about you.
- Give some practical tips to your child about how they can look after themselves. For example, show them how to wash their hands properly and remind them when they should be doing it.
- Keep as many regular routines as possible so that your child feels safe and that things are stable.
- Spend time doing a positive activity with your child (e.g. reading, playing, painting, cooking) to help reassure them and reduce their anxiety. This is also a great way of providing a space for them to talk through their concerns, without having a ‘big chat’.
- Encourage your child to think about the things they can do to make them feel safer and less worried.
- Be aware that your child may want more close contact with you at this time and feel anxious about separation. Try to provide this support whenever possible.
- Remember to look after yourself too. If you yourself are feeling worried, or anxious about coronavirus, talk to someone you trust who can listen and support you.
Websites and Numbers
Here are some websites and numbers that may be helpful to you as adults during this difficult time: -
Samaritans - Call 116 123 - https://www.samaritans.org/how-we-can-help/contact-samaritan/
Steps to Wellbeing - Telephone: 0300 123 1120 - https://www.steps2wellbeing.co.uk/