While some thrived during the Corona Virus shutdowns, many of us felt lost without a routine. Those of us with anxiety felt our symptoms elevate due to there being no answers. We don’t know what’s happening with work or how long things will be put on hold. As things reopen, we are navigating a different routine that changes with each phase. Having a routine is often beneficial for anxiety because it sets goals and allows us to feel in control. Similarly, rituals can also help.
Rituals are repetitive behaviors that can be anything from saying a prayer to cleaning. They bring a sense of order when things seem to be in disarray. According to Psychology Today, merely participating in predictable movements makes your brain believe it is in a state of stability.
A good example is cultural traditions. If you look at these rituals, you’ll see repetition and rigidity. Partaking in them gives us all a feeling of structure.
You can create your own rituals if you’re feeling particularly anxious lately. One example is to do a breathing exercise when you start your day. You can also do this when you feel overwhelmed. A ritual that invites awareness and meditation provides extra impact to calm a busy mind.
Another idea is to go outside and take a walk. Take some time to get in a little movement while rethinking your focus. You can make this a mindful walk by observing your own steps and surroundings.
If you feel restless when you’re anxious, you can tackle home improvement projects or organization tasks. This can be done by cleaning or redecorating. You spend a lot of time in your environment, especially now, so it should be comfortable. The added boost of exercise and productivity is a great tension-reliever!
If you feel like any of these helped you make sure to apply them to other situations. For example, if a breathing exercise helped you before an interview, try it before your next meeting. Having small rituals that calm your mind can be extended well past the Coronavirus times.