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How to Stay Emotionally Connected During Social Isolation

In just a matter of days the world turned topsy-turvy. Last week I was in the Rhône Valley visiting vineyards for a work assignment with little access to world news. Then March 12 started a travel ban. We returned to the U.S. March 13. JFK Airport was eerily quiet at 5 p.m. when we arrived, usually a very busy time.

By Saturday, photos showed turmoil in the same location. Now we are hibernating at a time when we desire a joyful spring awakening, a week we usually go out to celebrate our wedding anniversary. Projects are on hold; three work trips for March and April are canceled. We are contemplating what’s next.

We accept life on pause. But it is disquieting. How do you process and cope with a situation that is changing by the day around the world and affecting so many people you know and work with? How do you manage anxiety creep? How do you feel less alone when your are socially isolating? What is the impact from all of this?

According to a 2017 report from Brigham Young University, social isolation can be harmful to your health, impacting physical and cognitive function, mental health and overall decline. Read this article “Social Isolation: It Could Kill You” from the American Psychological Association (May 2019) https://www.apa.org/monitor/2019/05/ce-corner-isolation.

Humans are naturally social creatures. Processing the directive to socially isolate is like telling us to wear our clothes inside out and shoes on different feet. We can do it, but it feels awkward and uncomfortable.

Here are some tips I hope will help

  • Go outside for fresh air. The days are longer and getting warmer. Being in nature will uplift your spirits and get you moving which increases your endorphins and helps generate a calming effect.
  • If you are working from home, which I do every day, create a quiet work space away from distractions to help you concentrate. Set aside a chunk of time to answer emails and check social media rather than throughout the day (unless that is your job). This will help you stay focused and be more productive.
  • If your mind is wandering, step away from what you are doing for a few minutes to reset. Try a five-minute movement break every hour. One of the advantages of working remotely is creating flexible hours to take advantage of when you feel more productive.
  • Manage the information you take in to avoid overload. The frenzy of news and social sharing is overwhelming. Limit television and social media screen times to specific times of the day and not late at night.
  • Call a friend at the start or end of the day to say hello. That person may also feel isolated. I try to call one person every day.
  • If your children are at home because schools are closed, this is a great time to do things together: read, cook, play games and music and limit all screen time. This is not the time to socially isolate within your own house.
  • Do something with your hands. I have friends who are quilting, cooking, gardening crafting and painting. I am not talking about doing chores; make it creative and enjoyable.
  • Finally, remember this: When the world seems complicated, try to simplify. When things feel unsettled, your life and activities may need to resettle a bit to adapt and adjust. There is help and support to stay calm amid chaos.

Top Five Wellness Tips We Learned From Lauren Bongiorno!

At Lyfebulb, we’re SO lucky to have Lauren Bongiorno on our T1D Lyfebulb Ambassador Team! Her expertise in countless areas related to self empowerment, fitness, nutrition and health is what makes her such a great influencer. We can all learn a thing or two from Lauren’s expertise!

Today we’re highlighting some of Lauren’s best wellness tips from  IG to share with you today. Her advice is relatable to everyone living with a chronic illness, T1D patients, or  even those interested in creating a well-balanced life.

Check her out at LaurenBongiorno.com !

TIP 1: PENCIL IN VACATION WORKOUT SESSIONS TO KEEP BALANCED

TIP 2: ENJOY YOUR VACATION: DON’T THINK ABOUT “EARNING YOUR MEAL”

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HERE’S THE TRUTH: I aways work out on vacation so I can be less strict about what I eat. yeeeeeppppp. For me it’s not about burning calories/ earning my meal, but with being able to eat waffles, risotto, pizza, tropical fruit, truffle fries without my blood sugars roller coastering all over the place. Sure it would be easier to cook all my meals in the room or only order fish and vegetables out, but i want the freedom to indulge if that’s what I want. For someone like me with #typeonediabetes, if i’m not working out, eating these foods would spike my blood sugar real fast and it would take hours to get it down. When this happens I feel so tired, moody, killer headache… not fun. I feel 10000x better strategically structuring my workouts to support a little more flexibility on vacation. Also, I had 2 waffles for breakfast, pancakes, eggs, + a croissant and it was 💯. The end.

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TIP 3: PRIORITIZE YOUR HEALTH AND WELLBEING!

TIP 4: BE PRESENT IN THE MOMENT, YOUR BODY, AND LIFE

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part 1/3. New Year Intentions. I should have had multiple burn outs. I’m actually shocked at how all over the place I was last year. I know the only reason I was able to keep moving forward was because I prioritized my health( sleep, food, blood sugars). I heard once that busy isn’t a badge of honor. Couldn’t agree more. December was actually my best, most enjoyable month of the year. I told my best friend Alex it was my month of “yin”, which meant only dedicating time to the things that were absolutely essential, not overextending myself. Towards the end of the month I was so sad it was ending because I felt SO good. But then i realized oh wait i can do this all the time hahah. So that’s what i’m doing. My word of 2019: ESSENTIALISM. My guiding statement: “stay in relationship with what matters.”. Sign: 333 (the number I frequently see which I will use to remind me to trust that i’m on the right path). 2019, we in it. What did you guys set as your intentions? More excited for the next 12 months than I’ve ever been before. Can’t wait to throw these up on a vision board. #yearoftheessentialist

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TIP 5: STICK TO A DAILY ROUTINE

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part 2/3: My 6 new years daily habits💫 Its cool to set intentions in whatever way you’ll feel most successful! For me i’m a lover of checking boxes off + getting real specific. So last week i took some time to map out my 2019 daily habits: 1. Movement: yoga, hiit circuits, weights, pilates, walking. My WHY: blood sugars are best, mood is happy, love a challenge. 2. Tackle the big rocks before 12pm: the things on my to do list that are the most difficult. MY WHY: i have most energy and focus in morning hours. Want to sync up more with sunrise and sunset energy. 3. Be present through listen + feel. MY WHY: i sometimes find myself guessing where convo is going or rushing it to be doing something else. I want to feel a greater sense of connection and appreciation, treating every convo as sacred. 4. Lateral thinking exercise: solve a brain teaser or write down 10 ideas. MY WHY: get outside my box and limitations of habitual thinking patterns. See what blossoms. 5. Study outside my industry of health: book, podcast, documentary, the Economist, become more proficient in SPANISH! MY WHY: expand my knowledge into different areas. 6. Align + Manifest- journaling, card pull, visualization, or meditation. MY WHY: we attract the level at which we vibrate at. Excited for all these! My daily routines were getting a bit stale. What things are you looking to make into habits this year? #newyear #growthmindset

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