1. Exercise: if you’re not in total lock down, go outside, breathe the air, get some Vitamin D from the sun and take a walk. I live in the city so I always wear a mask in case some ‘eejit’ gets too close. If you’re stuck in the house and have stairs then run up and down them several times or do some step aerobics. I’m fortunate to have an exercise bicycle and a trampoline so I go for a cycle or a bounce most days, even if it’s just for 5 minutes. Learn to dance, there’s loads of online tutorials or follow a daily exercise instructor on YouTube.
Physical activity is great for boosting the immune system, it may help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways and help fight disease. It will always make you feel good too so try it, even just for 5 or 10 minutes a day. If you get bored maybe try exercising while watching a program you love or a documentary about something you’re interested in. I went through a phase of watching Frasier from the discomfort of my exercise bicycle. The time goes by a lot more quickly and before you know it you’ve pulled a 10 miler. Failing all of that, do some grassercise if you’re lucky enough to have a garden.
2. Boost your immune system: Drink water and eat fruit and veg. This is a no brainer. We know, in general, that eating fruit and vegetables and drinking water can be good for our immune systems and our health. However, there is no evidence specific foods will help fight this particular virus but it can’t do you any harm. Also try the Wim Hof breathing method or cold therapy, there are loads of his tutorials online and I’m definitely going to try this. My immune system hasn’t been guarding off those wee infection feckers like it should be so anything is worth a try, no-one wants ‘Rona’ to come calling.
3. Keep busy: keep your mind and body active and this includes relaxing. My favourite thing to say is ‘relaxing is doing something too’. Apart from filling in hardship loan applications I have been busy teaching myself how to use Photoshop, trying to make a music video, devising an online songwriting course with a friend to sell on Udemy and I’ve just finished writing a song I started before lock down. I’m always working on band adminy stuff at home anyway so there’s lots I can continue to do while locked down. Make lists of things you want to achieve, things you never got around to in the past because life just took over, NOW really is the time! My list looks something like this… learn to play lap steel guitar, tidy up my paperwork, work on setting up Delly’s Dresses online, tidy the spare room, sort photos on my computer, finish songwriting course etc etc…
4. Learn a new skill: this feeds into the last one about keeping busy. In my case I’ve learned a lot about using photoshop which I find useful when it comes to band posters, banners etc… It’s important to keep your mind active but it’s equally as important to relax your mind, remember ‘relaxing is doing something too’. I’ve been learning how to meditate by using an app on my phone. If I don’t feel like using a screen I just try to practice taking slow, deep breaths, usually before falling asleep at night. I’ve also just enrolled in an online PR and Marketing Course for Musicians which evidently I haven’t started yet.
5. Get dressed everyday: get up and get dressed everyday, even if it’s just to go to the study to work from home. This will help maintain some sense of normality and generally just make you feel better about yourself. You never know who might call you for a video chat out of the blue. Hoke out those old clothes and try them on, they might fit now. The back of the wardrobe really is the new shopping mall.