Initial research suggests that COVID-19 has an adverse effect on mental health, and mental health appears to improve when restrictions are lightened and individuals are not relegated to just their homes. While this makes sense to many, it can still be difficult to revert back to your old routine, especially for men who have shifted to working from home and taking on even more household responsibilities.
Embracing the art of self-care is just as important for men as it is for women, and Hisownmancounselling.co.uk wants to help. Here are a few easy ways any man can boost his spirits in the days following the COVID-19 pandemic.
“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance. ” – Oscar Wilde
Revamp Your Surroundings
If you have been stuck at home for a while, you may be tired of staring at the same layout and the same decor. Tense feelings may also build up if your family is arguing and complaining or being critical of one another.
You can relieve built-up tension by turning your home into a fresh and vibrant space in a few easy steps:
- Open the curtains to let more light in.
- Move the furniture around for a fresh perspective.
- Add some plants to a room.
- Declutter spaces like doorways and offices.
- Add mirrors to make a space look larger.
“An empty lantern provides no light. Self-care is the fuel that allows your light to shine brightly.” – Unknown
Sort Out Your Grooming Routine
It is all too easy to go for days without styling your hair, shaving or even showering. While a shaggy look can be appealing, try not to neglect your grooming routine, especially during a quarantine. If you have not done so yet, research which skin and hair products are best suited for your needs. Some products you may wish to add to your cabinet include foot lotion, facial scrub and eye cream (for those dark circles).
Aim for Quality Sleep
If there is a lot on your mind as far as work and health are concerned, it can be difficult to get a good night’s sleep. Sleep deprivation can affect everything from your productivity to your driving ability. If you are having trouble sleeping, you may wish to consult your physician about supplements and try turning in earlier.
“If you get tired, learn to rest, not to quit.” – Banksy
Take a Breather Once a Day
“Me time” is not a concept that is exclusively used for mums. Men have a lot to deal with, too, and if you do not have some sort of outlet, your pent-up feelings could burst forth in a way you may regret. Learning when you need to step away can be difficult. Try scheduling in a specific block of your day that you can use to be alone or do something you enjoy. If you are still struggling with anger management or overwhelming feelings, you might consider talking with a counsellor.
Sit somewhere quiet with a coffee. Close your eyes and notice how the cup or mug feels. Notice the heat coming through the mug to your hands. Take a deep sniff of the coffee. Notice how it smells. These actions “bring you back to the present” and can help you feel more relaxed and calm.
Overhaul Your Diet
The foods you eat play a direct role in your overall health. Ready-made and processed foods can contribute to feelings of depression and anxiety. The BBC notes choosing to indulge in healthy amounts of fruits and vegetables as a part of a healthy lifestyle, however, could add years to your life. There are even particular foods that are great for men to eat regularly:
- Beans are great for the heart and testosterone levels.
- Oysters are heart-healthy and boost your immune system.
- Grapes are also good for testosterone levels.
- Watermelon improves blood circulation.
- Garlic aids in fighting disease and infection.
- Eggs are a good source of vitamin D.
“A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.”
Go Easy on Yourself
Most importantly, in the middle of a global pandemic, you need to go easy on yourself. Find what helps you feel more like your old self, whether that is changing around the furniture, going to bed earlier or switching up the snacks you choose. With a little focus on yourself from time to time, you may find you enjoy life more than before.