Living Mindfully Through COVID-19

Feeling shut in? 

‘Nourishing You’ is the newest release from bestselling author Caralee Fontenele, where she shares her love of real food, flavour and mindful living with 100 simple recipes. We asked Caralee for some tips about thriving rather than surviving COVID-19:

Right now, as we all are social distancing and preparing to lock down to stay safe, life seems to feel crazier and more stressful than usual. The effects of COVID-19 have become extremely overwhelming for many from both a health and financial perspective. There seems to be so much uncertainty and we have little control over what is happening.

To protect our wellbeing in these hard times, it is important to balance obligations and stress with nurturing ourselves through thoughtful nutrition, sleep, meditation, enjoyable movement, connecting with nature, laughter and having fun.

Practising social distancing or isolation is an opportunity to get back to the basics of life, becoming simpler in the way we live and creating new healthy habits to support our physical and mental health now and into the future. It is cliché but true but to take care of the people that we love, we cannot pour from an empty cup.

My five tips for living mindfully in COVID-19

Healthy Mindset – Maintaining a healthy mindset is essential to living well. A healthy mindset involves finding ways to grow from your thoughts instead of letting your thoughts control your life. It is a journey and a practice that takes time to learn and make a habit. This may include focusing on positive information, reading or listening to a book that you haven’t had the chance to get to or tuning into your favourite uplifting podcast, like mine, The Law of Living Well. For some people it’s even just writing in a journal, mapping out plan or goals and creating a list of what you are grateful for.

Daily Movement – During this time when gyms are closed, it’s an opportunity to connect with nature through daily movement. If you cannot get outside because you are in quarantine, do an online yoga class, hop on your old exercise equipment or do a dance via YouTube.

Surround yourself with a supportive network – This is key to your wellness, especially when you are overwhelmed, stressed or anxious.  Your network could be the people you know in person and connect with online throughout distancing or groups you are already a part of online. You become who you spend time. If you subject yourself to people who are negative, insecure or destructive, it will affect your wellness. While in lockdown, follow people and join online groups that are supportive and uplifting and delete those that are not.

Eat real food like our grandparents used to eat – Food can either help us or hinder us. More than ever we need to be eating healthy, real food. Our energy levels, heart health, moods, weight, immune system, skin, gut health and how we feel depends on how we feed and fuel ourselves. Real food ingredients can also help to alleviate stress. My website www.caraleefontenele.com is filled with loads of recipe ideas using back to basics ingredients.

Rest & recovery – This stressful time is only made worse by all the information that is at our fingertips – on our phones, computers or TVs. Turn off the TV or Facebook so you have space to recover from the constant upsetting and alarming information. Do something fun that you enjoy instead, such as playing games, cooking, sitting by a fire pit or simply laying on the grass and enjoying the fresh smell.