Be positive

Looking after your mind, body and soul

Ways to keep your smile bright, your mind positive and your body active during this unprecedented time. When balanced with positive ingredients, managing stress, anxiety and personal feelings can be made much easier. With restrictions in place to self-isolate, it’s time to rejuggle your social calendar and daily routine to find happiness in what could otherwise be a very overwhelming situation. You never know, you may discover something new that you just love.

Daily dose of Vitamin D

Something as simple as opening your windows can help bring the outside in. Move your favourite chair by the window where you can sit and read your book while the sun streams in or make the most of the landscaped gardens and watch the spring flowers bloom.

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Find happiness in hobbies

A hobby, old or new, is a perfect way to keep your mind active while distracting yourself from the world outside. With more opportunity on your hands than you know what to do with, this is the perfect time to find something you love and to see where it takes you. Escape to a painting, write a book, poetry or music, learn the instrument you’ve had at the back of the cupboard for too long or dig out the sewing machine and get crafty.

Home workouts

Staying active will help lift your physical and mental wellbeing. Exercising little and often will release endorphins that can boost your energy and improve your circulation, helping you feel happier and healthier.

YouTube is a fabulous tool for following online videos by qualified instructors. Accessed via your computer, iPad, tablet or smartphone you can search for exercises from cardio classes to Pilates and yoga.

Celebrities such as Joe Wicks, ‘The Body Coach’, and Davina McCall offer easy-to-follow, energised routines from 10 minutes to an hour. The recently launched NHS Fitness Studio is also fantastic offering a range of aerobic and strengthening online classes.

If you regularly attend an exercise class, ask your instructor if they’re uploading any of their sessions online, as many are. That way you can follow your usual routines from the comfort of your home.

Read books (lots of them!)

If you ever needed an excuse to pick up a good book, it’s finally here. A book is the perfect escape transporting you to a fictional tale or discover the unearthed reality of a place or person. Once you’ve finished, swap your books with a neighbour or start a ‘Book Box’ in the communal lounge. See page 56 for our top reads.

music

Turn up the music

Listening to music can benefit your overall wellbeing, help regulate emotions and create happiness and relaxation in everyday life. When you hear songs you like, similarly to dancing, it can naturally help lift your mood, reduce stress and ease anxiety. So, for a double dose of daily goodness, turn up your favourite music and dance along to your go-to soundtrack!

Yoga & Pilates

Both yoga and Pilates offer a more relaxed approach to exercise, keeping your body moving and your joints warm, while helping to clear your mind. Yoga and mindfulness go hand in hand, and many find it particularly calming. Again, YouTube offers a great way to find an online teacher you love.

‘Yoga with Adriene’ is highly recommended as her videos are very gentle while offering a variety of moves, making them perfect for newcomers.

Bake a treat or two

Nothing lifts spirits quite like a cup of tea and a slice of cake in the afternoon. Mary Berry always says you can bake in advance and freeze it for later, so if you love to cook it's a great excuse to bake now and enjoy later.Her top tip is to keep the cake and icing separate, defrost at room temperature and assemble just before serving

If you don’t have all your usual ingredients to hand, there’s many recipes using replacement ingredients such as egg- free bakes and flourless goodies

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