Stuck in your make-do office-slash-house? Add social restrictions, having loved ones intruding into your space and time, and a host of other daily inconveniences to the mix, and you might just find yourself cooped up, uncomfortable and unnerved, in your own nesting place. Here are six ways to help you keep calm and carry on at home.
Inhale A Scent
Aromatherapy scents not only smell good, but can make you feel good by triggering emotions and memories, too. There are numerous scents, packaged in multifarious forms, with many ways to diffuse them. Buy a few bottles of essential oils (lemon, lavender and jasmine all have calming properties), and place a few drops to an electric diffuser, a bowl of hot water or into a spray bottle (for misting the room). Or, purchase scented candles or reed diffusers if you are sure of a favourite fragrance that you won’t tire of or get irritated by as the days go by.
The colour green supposedly appears relaxing to the eyes. But, if staring out the window at distant trees aren’t restful enough, you might like to try growing some flora on your premises. It not only beautifies and freshens your living space, the act of trimming and watering potted plants can be a nurturing activity for the soul and helps build patience. Hardier indoor plants such as monstera ferns, philodendrons, snake plants, air plants and even desktop miniature cacti are some of the easier ones to get your hands on and take care of.
Adopt A Pet
If you don’t have a green thumb or want more lively fauna, a pet might be more up your alley. Rather than a cat or a dog (they can be a handful if you are a newbie pet owner or are spending 24/7 with them in the confines of a compact work and living space), opt for petite-sized companions such as fish or hamsters. They are kept in closed environments that take up little space, are much less noisy and don’t need your constant supervision, making for perfect “friends” for you and your children, too. Just make sure to be committed to and responsible for these – your other – little ones.
Get Some Shuteye
Ease your digital eye strain by practising the optometrist-developed 20-20-20 rule. For every 20 minutes gazing at your screen, look away at something 20 feet (or 6 metres) away for 20 seconds. You can also choose to close your eyes and relax every 20 minutes for about 20 to 30 seconds. Better yet, take a 20- to 30-minute power nap if you can; it is said to help improve low motivation, sleepiness and moodiness, boosting your memory, cognition and energy when you return to finishing up your assignment.
Take A Stroll
Make it a daily habit to take a walk around the neighbourhood – in the morning before a bath, to buy lunch, or in the evening after dinner. It is an essential me-time, freeing up a tense mind and body by getting you out of the house and away from the desk (and sometimes, irritating family members). What’s more, you get some exercise and your blood circulation going; sunlight; fresh air; and reflection upon, inspiration from and appreciation of the wider world outside.
Have A Cup Of Tea
If a brisk walk is not your cup of tea, then just settle for an actual cup of tea instead. Set a period in the day for teatime – it helps you look forward to a deserved break from work and can help recharge you. Some of the popular flavours to steep include peppermint (to reduce anxiety and fatigue), chamomile (soothes and calms) and lavender (to relax). Pair with your favourite snack or pastry to give you some extra pep before continuing with your emails. Don’t imbibe too much or too late in the day in case the caffeine-rich ones interfere with your sleep or make you extra-jittery.
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