The Lockdown Series: Key 1 – Unlock Mindfulness

28 Apr 2020

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None of us had ever imagined that one day, the world would come to a standstill. That everybody around the globe would be sitting home – scared and agitated, and the reason wouldn’t be the army of an enemy country invading our lands, but the terror of a virus. Well, to be fair, this tiny virus is just as destructive and fatal – it had the power to confine us to the limits of our homes, and it did. 

The lockdown is the only thing everybody is talking about everywhere. However, there’s still a glimmer of hope shining from behind the chaos of this “new reality”. All you need to do is look. There is an opportunity staring at us – an opportunity to reboot and unlock new experiences. 

This is the first part of a series of articles where we talk about the ‘keys’ that help manage things in and around you. And in this first part, we’ll talk about the first key: mindfulness.

What Is Mindfulness?

Sounds so fancy, doesn’t it? Mindfulness has a way of sounding complicated but is an extremely simple ideology. It is nothing but our ability as individuals to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we are doing, and not be overwhelmed by what’s happening around. 

Things that you can do in times like these are limited, and those limits are narrowed down further if you are restrained. Fortunately, being mindful is still an option available. Here are a few deeds you can do.

Delivering Kindness

You have to hand it to this pandemic, because of this we have become human again. Racial, religious, economic – none of these backgrounds matter anymore. Everybody’s reaching out to help those in need. You don’t hear ‘I, me, mine’ anymore. There’s only one sound echoing and it’s ‘us’ and this is being reflected in the number of acts of generosity by various corporates, organizations, celebrities, and normal individuals. Everybody is spreading their hands wide open to help.

Uday Foundation, an NGO that is raising funds so that it can reach its goal of providing food supplies to 50,000 underprivileged people for a month. It also wishes to provide 1,00,000 soaps and sanitizers to the homeless.

Youth for Unity and Voluntary Action – YUVA, has been providing food to the slum dwellers and needy families. They are helping families of municipal sweepers, families that relied on food and other stalls like ice-creams, chaats, garlands, balloons, etc. They have reached nearly 688 households, but their service has been restricted considering the risks of the disease. They are waiting for official permissions to continue.

Senior citizens in Pune are being helped by volunteers of Action For Pune Development. They help them in getting groceries, medicines and other essential commodities. 

These are just a few of many NGOs and other volunteering groups that are helping out.

Helping fellow human beings in these tough times is a good deed. So, if you want to help, here’s what you can DO!

  • Donate money or food to NGOs and other volunteering groups
  • Donate masks, energy bars, energy drinks for doctors in hospitals that are working with COVID-19 patients 
  • Help your local cops with energy bars and energy drinks
  • Ask your maids, watchmen, drivers, etc if they need anything
  • Practicing social-distancing is the best help you can provide

Eating With Awareness

The times are difficult, agreed, but that doesn’t give you a free pass to ignore your health. You have to be conscious of what, how and when you eat. Mindful eating is a technique to gain control over your eating habits. It has also shown to promote weight loss, reduce binge eating and help you feel better. 

With our busy schedule and all the hustle, eating has become a mindless act. It’s like eating is not even a need anymore, it’s nothing but a task that we want to finish as quickly as possible. Well, this can lead to health issues and many other problems, since it takes our brain nearly 20 minutes to realize that our hunger has been sated and now we are full. If you eat too fast, you’ll end up eating more than what your body requires, as the signal is yet to reach the brain saying that you’ve had enough. 

When you eat mindfully, you are able to draw all your attention to the food you eat, and it enables you to sate your true physical hunger, giving your body the exact amount of food that it needs. No more, no less.

To attain the complete benefit of mindful eating, here’s what you should do. 

  • Pay complete attention to your food. Do not multitask
  • Avoid distractions like checking the phone or watching TV
  • Savor the food. Chew it well
  • Make sure your meals last for at least 20 minutes
  • Snack smart. Don’t sit with the whole pack. Take a small portion in a dish instead
  • Snack on fruits, nuts and seeds like pumpkin, sunflower, flax and chia

Intimacy In Social Distancing

Social distancing means maintaining distance physically, but does that mean we need to lose touch? No, absolutely not. We are equipped with evolving technology that will help us connect with our friends and family who are distant. Check on your friends and family over video calls whenever possible, it’ll help both sides to deal with this situation. Apart from video calling, there are multiple other things that you could do online.

To connect with your family during quarantine, here’s what you can do.

  • Play online games together
  • Watch movies and shows together on platforms like Netflix  
  • Send fun pictures, videos and jokes
  • Share positive thoughts
  • Set goals and keep a track of each other’s goals
  • Video call while you are doing something fun or trying something new

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