Sirona Therapy serving Westchester Fairfield and Putnam New York blog post about quarantine exhaustion

Isolation Exhaustion And Self Care Remedies

Isolation Exhaustion Is Setting In. Learn Specific Ways To Keep Body And Spirit Healthy


Isolation exhaustion, from being in quarantine, is causing fatigue, fear, and anxiety. These are all reasonable feelings. In times of forced physical distancing, remaining emotionally close is more important than ever. Connections aren’t going to be the same, which causes a real sense of exhaustion that can affect our physical and mental health. We must take care of ourselves so that we can continue to maintain a strong and positive spirit, and connect in ways that are healthy and grounding.

The idea that a social person can lock themselves down and not experience isolation exhaustion is insane! Of course, playing video games, scrolling social media, and watching Netflix are all great for a time. But, at this point, it is all starting to feel surreal, and even frightening. The fear of not being with others is real and reasonable. Luckily, there are ways to manage isolation exhaustion, and the anxiety of quarantine, by practicing some simple self-care techniques, including:

  • Breathing
  • Playing
  • Meditation
  • Journaling

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut blog post about isolation exhaustion in quarantine.
People are dealing with isolation during these uncertain times of quarantine from the COVID-19 scare, and self-care is finally getting more of the recognition it deserves. The problem is that most people have trouble identifying self-care and how to put it in place in their lives. Speaker and author, Brene Brown has cited numerous studies and statistics about just how vital self-care is, including allowing the emotion of vulnerability without falling into a shame cycle.

Read on to learn the techniques for self-care that can help you to remain grounded and more in-tune with your emotions during these difficult times.

Isolation Exhaustion Relief Technique #1 – Breathing

Your breathing is one of the most fundamental and straightforward ways to relax. There are several deep breathing techniques that you can use to calm yourself, reduce stress, and slow your heart rate.

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut blog post about isolation exhaustion in quarantine. 4-7-8 breathing.

4 7 8 breathing is a technique for relaxation that is used in meditation and yoga practices all around the world. Dr. Weil, founder of the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, states that 4 7 8 breathing is excellent for beginners. This is how you do it:

  • Get your body settled into a comfortable position.
  • Release the air from your lungs completely.
  • Breath in through the nose for 4 seconds.
  • Hold that breath in your lungs for 7 seconds.
  • Exhale through the mouth with some force, and even noise, for 8 seconds.
  • Cycle through this breathing for as many as four times.

Belly (Diaphragmatic) Breathing

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut blog post about isolation exhaustion in quarantine. Diaphragmatic breathing.Proper breathing comes from the mouth or nose and fills in the cavity of the stomach, stretching the diaphragm as your lungs fill. This can be a focus of breathing practice that helps to calm your central nervous system. Much stress is kept in the muscles of the diaphragm, and stretching and loosening to relax these muscles with belly breathing can help you to relax your whole body.
According to the Harvard medical website, here are the steps for belly breathing:

  • Lie flat on your back with bent knees.
  • One hand resting on your chest, one hand sleeping on your stomach.
  • Breathe in slowly, filling the lungs with the area below your chest.
  • Your hand on your belly should rise while the hand on your chest should remain still.
  • Repeat this for as many times as needed

Isolation Exhaustion Relief Technique #2 – Playing

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut blog post about isolation exhaustion in quarantine.
Play is an essential part of the human experience. The National LeoTek Center has found that play helps children with self-esteem, and even relieve stress and pain. For adults, play can be a great way to get exercise, and connect with their children. Take time out of your day to unplug. Get creative with games and play in your house. See this as a blessing instead of a chore, and you may even end up having some fun!


Isolation Exhaustion Relief Technique #3 – Meditation

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut blog post. Example of how to place hands during diaphragmatic breathing.The practice of mediation has been around for thousands of years. It is still widely used around the world as stress relief, pain relief, and training for self-care. Meditation leader and teacher Ajahn Brahm says that “Meditation is like a gym in which you develop the powerful mental muscles of calm and insight.” Working out the power of calm is possible during this time using these few simple steps:

  • Sit down comfortably, or you can lie down.
  • Close your eyes or keep them open and soft gaze at the floor.
  • Natural breathing is critical. Noticing the breath is what is essential.
  • Focusing on your breath, notice how your body moves with each breath, the small differences of each breath, and how your body feels as you breathe.
  • If you find your mind wandering to thoughts, gently nudge it back to the breath.

Isolation Exhaustion Relief Technique #4 – Journaling

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester, Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut image of person writing in their journal
The thoughts we have throughout the day can become jumbled. The importance of journaling becomes apparent when you start to place your thoughts on paper, and they become more coherent. Confusion and fear can come from ideas that have not been well cultivated. This fear and anxiety from confused thoughts are especially common when people are isolated and placed in stressful situations. Here are some tips for starting a daily journal from the Center For Journaling Therapy:

Using the acronym of W.R.I.T.E., anyone can write a detailed and in-depth journal entry about their day…

  • W-What: What is your topic to write about? What are you thinking and feeling about this topic?
  • R-Review: Reflect on this topic, maybe through breathing techniques or meditation. Think about feelings and thoughts that come up for you about this topic.
  • I-Investigate: look at your thoughts and feelings with a detail-oriented mind. Start writing about these details, and don’t stop unless you need to stop and refocus by doing breathing or meditation techniques again.
  • T-Time: Write for about 5-15 minutes. This is a minimum that you should time so that you keep going.
  • E-Exit: Read what you wrote and reflect on the entry in a sentence or two at the bottom of the page.

In Conclusion

Self-care is a lifetime journey. You may need some help along this journey, and Sirona Therapy can be that guide for you. We work with you and your situation to find self-care practices that work for you safely, and will help your mental and physical health. This will lift your spirits and reduce fatigue. For your convenience, we provide remote services via Telehealth Psychotherapy. Please contact us for more information.

Sirona Therapy serving Westchester Putnam New York and Fairfield Connecticut Jennifer L Zauner, LCSWR Psychotherapist
Jennifer L. Zauner, LCSWR
Clinical Director
Sirona Therapy

#coronavirus #covid-19 #anxiety #psychotherapy

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