How to adapt exercises at home to ensure mental wellbeing?

Written by True Topia

June 1, 2021

Do you feel stressed working from home all day? Do surprise deadlines in odd hours scare you even while you rest? Is there a constant pressure to hustle even if you are not lagging behind? 

It will not be surprising if all these sounds familiar to you. The worldwide opportunity that the working class received to work from the comfort of their home comes with its own set of mental health ruinations. As the world faces one of its greatest biological battles, we human always have this constant feeling of helplessness. 

There is an unending list of benefits that can be pulled down for the facility of work from home but, staying at home 24*7 causes massive damage to the mental wellbeing. This constant struggle with the personal and professional life has drawn a big chunk of society worldwide into the victim hands of ill mental health. 

Why is taking care of mental health important now, more than ever?

Good mental health acts as the 70% fuel for our optimum productivity level in our day to day life. Neglecting mental health struggles has been a part of our life for the longest time. But now is the time to take care of it more than ever. 

  • Good mental wellbeing ensures that negative hormones are secreted in minimum amounts in our body. 
  • It directly ensures that we have a positive behavior and approach towards everyone and everything we do. 
  • During these hard times, a positive mental wellbeing ensures that we look after our dear ones better. 

When you avoid the symptoms that your body is showcasing as a sign of ill mental health, it tends to increase as time passes by until one fine day when you are overwhelmed with it. 

So, what are these mental health issues we are talking about as an effect?

  • Increased stress due to work ambiance and style.
  • The constant struggle with anxiety
  • Feeling stuck and depressed
  • Overwhelmed with loneliness and isolation
  • The constant pressure to hustle harder. 
  • A mixed emotion of some or all of the above. 

These are some of the most common mental health issues that most people are dealing with as a result of work from home scenarios. So, now the question arises, how to cope up with this situation?

When everything is shut down globally, it is quite difficult and natural to have a bad mental health condition. However, in the ground level stages, exercise can be the scientific solution to all these issues. Of course, if you are already severely affected, it is best to seek some professional advice. But, for the ground level stages, exercises can do wonders to help deal with mental health issues. 

Benefits of exercise upon mental health issues

Before we speak about the benefits, it’s important to keep in mind that we are not suggesting hitting the gym and that isn’t feasible either. What we are trying to implicate is how exercises at home can help you deal with and achieve good mental wellbeing. 

  • Exercise increases the level of good hormones such as endorphins that helps you to deal with the feeling of pain and other mental health issues. 
  • It keeps your body moving hence it helps you to stay fit physically that directly affects your mental health. 
  • While you work from home, you often forget to take breaks away from the work thoughts. Exercises help you to get that break away from work. 
  • Yoga and meditation are specifically designed to take care of your mind. The exercises are easy yet mindful that help to deal with some of the greatest mental health issues. 
  • Constant work from home makes you work anytime and every time of the day making your routine the same. The brain fails to shut down work even if you aren’t working due to the same ambiance. Exercise helps to break the monotonous schedule and allows your mind to calm down.

All the goodness infused with basic home workout can help you beat mental health issues you are going through due to hectic work life at home.

Let us dive deep into each of these mental health issues and how exercise can help to come to terms with it in a better way.  

Here is a You tube from a psychiatrist, the Medscape video reference for the benefits of exercises upon mental health issues:

Mental health effects due to work from home:

Stress-

Is the first thing you do after waking up is put on the multiple task hat? While you are working from home, it is quite obvious that work isn’t the only thing that you are doing. A mixture of all the household routines along with work can leave anybody stressed. According to a report by European Foundation for the Improvement of living and working conditions, 41% of remote working employees report higher levels of stress compared to 25% of the ones who work at office. 

What stresses out the situation more is uncertainty. Yes, despite this being a part of life, uncertainty about the job, work, healthcare has struck badly into the stress levels.

Another major cause of stress at such times is the loss of control over the future. People like to have a general plan set about the near and far future that gives them a sense of control. However, during these times, it is not possible to predict or plan for the future as times may take a turn anytime. All these thoughts become an add-on to the stress levels. 

How exercise can help to deal with it?

  • Yoga: Yogic exercises and stretching give in a sense of control over the body and mind. When you can attain this, your mind becomes more poised for you to take control over. 
  • Walking: A brief walk or run at the terrace can give you that desired break from the overwhelming work schedule your brain is longing to have. 
  • Workout: Light workout can help your muscles relax a bit releasing all the added tension that got built up due to the unending work hours. 

Work from home schedules tends to keep our body stagnant at one place building up all that extra stress. The idea is to take short breaks in between and keep your body moving that helps your mind to adapt to the change in the environment. 

Anxiety-

Is your body muscle in a constant shake while you freak out glaring at your laptop screen? Then chances are there that you are having anxiety. 

Excessive stress leads to an upscale mental health issue leading to anxiety. One cannot differentiate much between stress and anxiety unless you observe minutely. However, the scale of reaction in anxiety is higher. Your body never seems to rest even if you are not working, the mind seems to be overwhelmed with all the thoughts that are not in your control even when you go to sleep. 

Well, that’s not it. Anxiety can worsen your sleep pattern leading to some episodes of anxiety attacks. These attacks are mental breakdown periods when you don’t have any control over your emotions anymore. 

How can exercise help you deal with anxiety?

Anxiety leads to build in a lot of stress that tends to move out of the body. Due to this, your muscles feel at a constant move whenever you are anxious. Exercise helps to process out this excess energy in a better way.  

  • Workout: To get rid of that excess energy build-up, there is no better way than doing freestyle workouts at home. You can either do it yourself or take the help of online applications or videos to do the same.
  • Dance: There is no better way to get rid of anxiety and uplift your mood than dance. It helps your body to work out that energy without letting it feel like an added mental pressure.
  • Meditation: one of the major symptoms of anxiety includes a racing heartbeat and shortage of breath. Meditation will help you to calm your mind and get your heartbeat in control.
  • Deep breathing: Nothing works better for someone who faces anxiety than deep breathing. An excess amount of oxygen into the body gives it a sense of control and calm heart rate. It is important to do if you feel you are losing control over yourself i.e. near to an anxiety attack.
mental wellbeing

Depression-

When you are constantly working from home for months, chances are there that you might be going through a feeling of being stuck. Being in that loop of working without any promotion, without a change in ambiance, without anyone to talk to often makes one feel hopeless in life. As if they are not fulfilling their goals and that they are doomed. 

Depression can be a result of anything or everything that is affecting your mental well-being constantly. If you unnecessarily feel burnt, face constant emotional breakdown without reason, and feel hopeless about yourself, you may be leading into the paths of depression or are already depressed. 

You need to seek professional help for this. There is no alternative. Depression isn’t a battle that you can overcome alone. However, in addition to professional guidance, exercise can help you and become your right arm in the battle. 

  • Cardio exercise: Cardio exercises are the ultimate gift you can give to your body and mind. The amounts of good hormones such as endorphins, dopamine secreted during cardio exercises help you to deal with depression better. 
  • Tai Chi: Similar to yogic exercises, this form of light movement exercises practiced in the eastern region can help you break-free the aura of depression your body is dealing with. 
  • Yoga: Nothing better than yoga can help you attain that blissful balance of mind and body. It gives a sense of connection and understanding of what your body needs without being overwhelmed with it. 
  • Walking: at times being in the same environment for a long time can become a bonus to your depression journey. So, change and amp up your ambiance a bit, go for a walk. If not outside, at least at the terrace.

Pressure, loneliness, and isolation-

Working from home and staying in at all times have caused our life to cut out from a lot of important aspects. Social interaction, communication with one’s own-self and others, and ultimately, cutting out the interaction of our mind with our body. All this leads to a constant build-up of unknown pressure, loneliness, and isolation. 

Exercise helps you to gain that lost connection. It helps you to gain clarity with what your body needs and is trying to convey. 

  • Social workout sessions: due to the overwhelming routine you are having, there is a clear excuse to avoid social interaction. Get a workout buddy along with you. It will help you to get over isolation and enhance your body balance well. 
  • Walking: Having a walk outside (even terrace) can help you feel more connected to social beings. It will enhance your interaction decreasing your sense of loneliness. 
  • Dance: Dance your heart out. It will help you to get rid of all the extra pressure built up and overcome isolation. Also, this works as a good cardio workout hence, all the hormones secreted will uplift your mood like no other. 
  • Community Yoga: There a lot of online yoga communities that practice yoga every day at a particular time. Join these communities to keep your social interaction in check while enjoying the perfect blend of your mind and body control at the same time. 
  • Meditation: Meditation helps your body and mind to deal with all the mental wellbeing challenges your daily routine brings in. 

The wellbeing of your mind is extremely crucial to have an immune body system and healthy life. Exercise plays a vital role to attain the same. Having the same ambiance, the whole day and night doesn’t help your brain and mind to shut your work off and relax. The whole difference between work life and personal life gets blurred when you work from home. Yes, it comes with its own sets of benefits but with the price of your mental wellbeing. 

The responsibility of your mental health is upon your own hands. Exercise and meditation at home is your best friend to do so. It is important to take care of your mental wellbeing now so that you can be at your productive best at all times.

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