By: Mara Johson
Not medically reviewed by Dr. Erin Stair
It’s been nearly a year since the start of the global shutdowns and stay-at-home orders. We have all stocked up on masks, hand sanitizer, gloves, and toilet paper. We continue to faithfully squirrel away pandemic essentials and medical supplies like gloves and masks even now. Many of us have learned how to bake bread and cookies from scratch. Many of us have binge-watched Netflix to escape from our own four walls. Now in 2021, we are seeing progress in reopening of society with the rollout of vaccines. We are all getting tired of worrying about Covid-19. We are all anxious for a more normal life outside of our homes. Many of us are experiencing pandemic fatigue. If you and your family are suffering from pandemic fatigue, try the four methods outlined below.
- Floatation Tank
A sensory deprivation or flotation tank is used for Restricted Environmental Stimulation Therapy (REST). It is a soundproof, dark tank filled with a foot or less of saltwater. Spending time in a flotation tank has been shown to decrease stress and anxiety in patients of all ages. Additionally, sensory deprivation tanks help people sleep better and decrease muscle pain. For more information about this therapy, check out What is a Floatation Tank?
- Practice Yoga
One of the best ways to improve your mental health and flexibility is by practicing yoga. You don’t need much to start. A simple yoga mat or towel is all that is necessary to begin. There are many options online for yoga classes if you don’t feel comfortable with in-person classes at your local yoga studio. However, it is important to note that there are different kinds of yoga, including Hatha (slow), Vinyassa (flow), Kundalini (chakras), and many more. Choose the style of yoga that suits your fitness level.
- Head for an Adventure
Doing something new, exciting, and sometimes a bit scary takes your mind off of the pandemic. By focusing on the new activity or adventure, you momentarily press pause on your mental to-do list. In fact, there are many benefits to adding adventure to your life, including increased energy, a sense of calm, and more. Some example adventures that you can do close to home are learning a new sport like stand-up paddleboarding or snowshoeing.
- Take a Walk
Since the beginning of time, walking has been a way for human beings to ease worries, stress, and anxiety. There are famous walks around the world like the Camino de Santiago and the Kumano Kodo that have proven to be inspiration for countless people. The simple act of walking removes you from your surroundings and gets you into a rhythm. That rhythm of your footsteps is repetitive almost like a chant or a mantra. Try to do this without your phone to just be in the moment.
The last year has been a challenging time for us all. However, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. With the gradual reopening of society and vaccine rollouts, we are so close to our new normal. By adding one or all of the methods outlined above, you and your family can not only survive the pandemic but thrive. These methods to ease pandemic fatigue, or versions of them, can be implemented at any time.