Here we go again : 10 Wellbeing Habits for your Home and Happiness in Lockdown 2.0
We all know wellbeing is important. More than ever, we are seeing and feeling the effects of isolation and the direct impact our surroundings have on our feelings. So faced with a winter lockdown, let’s look at the things you can do to enhance your winter wellness and banish the winter lockdown blues.
- Share meals together
Humans have always eaten collectively. It is perhaps only recently we have become so used to the daily rush that we have taken to eating alone. How and who we eat with is as important as what we choose to eat. Studies have even shown the nutritional benefit of the food is likely to be higher when sharing with others.
Living with others in lockdown is a huge benefit, but it does get taken for granted after a while. (Anyone else love their “me time”?) Making time to sit, talk, and eat together (no phones!) provides a daily dose of healthy social connection to look forward to.
- Get outdoors
It may be a lot less appealing when the skies are grey and gloomy, but the benefits of getting outdoors in the winter shouldn’t be underestimated, especially when spending so much time inside. Taking time out of your day to divert your gaze away from work can do wonders for your mood, releasing stress and releasing endorphins.
With everything demanding our attention, from zoom calls to social media, nature gives our brain a break from everything that mentally drains us. You may even experience improved focus and attention once you return.
- Keep in touch
If there’s anything this pandemic has highlighted, it’s our need to talk, listen and empathise. Never has it been clearer that we are a social species and the paramountcy of friendship and connection to our physical and mental health.
It’s easy to be ‘busy’ with work, but try scheduling in time each week to connect with someone you otherwise wouldn’t. Be the initiator, you never know who needs a friendly hello.
- Build routine (and schedule downtime)
Without the normality of our daily commute, meetings, lunch breaks, and weekends, everything tends to blend together. The world feels particularly heavy and stressful right now, and one of the best things for your wellbeing is to focus on what you can control.
Schedule your days in a way that works for you: to-do lists, weekly plans, hour by hour schedules etc. Just be sure to also schedule in time to relax too – this will motivate you to not put off other tasks!
- Learn to enjoy mornings
A good morning starts the evening before. Make sure you are getting enough sleep, so waking up without the sun feels less daunting.
Borrowing the Danish concept of hygge (which in it’s simplest form emphasises wellness and content), create a routine that you enjoy waking up to. Limit media intake first thing (the world can wait); if you must go on your phone, opt for something joyful such as messaging family/friends or taking inspiration from Pinterest. Make a coffee, pop some pastries in the oven, open the windows, or even light some candles.
Mornings don’t have to be boring.
- Remember your why – connect to your values
With the world constantly screaming look at this! And this! And this! We can easily forget about our own values and purpose. Fight anxiety by taking time weekly to remember what is important to you. It can be personal or work values, but reminding yourself of purpose and achievement can go a long way.
With your home
- Rethink your (work-from-home) WFH environment
Whilst it’s tempting to work from the sofa (or bed), it’s not the most productive, or comfortable. Move your desk to optimise its natural light/your view. Plants are also an amazing addition to a work environment, due to their natural ability to aid focus, immunity, and reduce stress.
- But don’t forget the bathroom
It’s easy to focus on home office space during a lockdown, but let’s not forget about the little spaces of serenity your home can offer too. Spending significantly more time indoors, it’s important to value all rooms of the house and the value they give us: whether that’s productivity, or space to escape and relax. Again, adding plants and biophilic elements (i.e. natural) into bathrooms create a sense of calm and escapism we all need.
- Open those windows. Seriously, even if it’s raining.
Let some fresh air in. Increasing ventilation by getting new air circulating isn’t just great for keeping the house smelling clean, but also is a fantastic natural stress remedy, boosting your energy and strengthening your immune system. Not bad for a five-second task right?
- Do what feels right for your space
Our homes are subjective, everyone’s is different and that’s part of their charm. Where isolation causes us to spend a lot more time inside, we become more aware and reliant on our surroundings for our feelings and behaviour. Your surroundings are important, but remember there’s no right or wrong way. If you feel like getting the Christmas decorations out, do it. It’s mid-November now anyway.
Philippa and Tom Charrier are founders of FAT Properties. FAT Properties was created to make a positive impact on the world through property development. FAT Properties create exemplary student homes designed for wellbeing.
Philippa and Tom have a 20 years of combined experience in the built environment, working on high profile urban regeneration projects. They understand the impact that the built environment has on people’s behaviour, mood and mental wellbeing.
FAT Properties is pioneering wellbeing led design in property development and transforming the student property market. Philippa and Tom authored the Amazon #1 bestseller ‘Designed for Wellbeing https://amzn.to/3nrzW0v. They are hosts of their brand new podcast Designed for Wellbeing https://wavve.link/DesignedForWellbeingPodcast
They work with investors to build long term wealth whilst delivering a positive social impact.