Taking Care of Yourself During the COVID-19 Isolation

By: Stephani Fenkanyn, Health Educator at BANA


Taking Care of Yourself During the COVID-19 Isolation

By: Stephani Fenkanyn, Health Educator at BANA

The outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) may be stressful. Fear and anxiety about the disease can be overwhelming and cause strong and triggering emotions. Being forced to isolate without your normal supports can feel very difficult for some.

First and foremost, it’s important to know that it is completely normal and reasonable to be feeling this way! You are not alone. These are unprecedent times of change and transition and no one expected that we would be here. Remember that everyone reacts to stress differently and whichever way you are reacting is valid. We are here for you!

Here are some tips & strategies you can apply that may help during this time:


  1. Set limits around exposure to media and social media. Ensure you are taking breaks from news stories and social media. Know the facts, but don’t sink into the hysteria. Create boundaries of how much time you will allow yourself to watch the news. When on social media, seek out positive messages, humour and role models that support you in your health and mental wellness journey.

Here are few Instagram accounts that we like: @thebirdspapaya, @littleearthlings, @bodybravecanada, @jennifer_rollin, @journey_to_wellness, @chr1styharrison

  1. Move your body in a way that feels good. You may have had a routine in place for physical activity that has been forced to a halt. Without access to your normal fitness centre, gym or instructors, it can feel frustrating! That being said, this is an opportunity to try something new and to think outside of the box. Remember: there was a time where you were once in this same position and, at that time, you were mentally strong enough to work hard and find something that suited you. You can do it again. Celebrate your small wins!

Many movement and fitness videos can be found on You Tube, or instructors worldwide are offering free live stream sessions. We liked this one by Yoga with Adriene.

Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHZPtn15agE

  1. Take care of your body – Get enough sleep, start your day with a warm shower, get dressed, hydrate, take deep breathes, stretch and practice mindfulness if you can. One easy way to do this is to count your own breathes. Count ten in/out breathes and then start again. Another way is to pick an affirmation for the day and come back to it often throughout your day. An example may be: “I am capable of accomplishing all I would like to today.”
  1. Connecting with others. The benefit of technology is using it to our advantage to connect with people while still being physically distant. Facetime, Skype and Zoom are options to connect with people while seeing their face and hearing their voice. Text, IMessage, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are all ways to send and receive love and support. Send voice notes, memes that make you smile and emojis to friends to start your day on a positive note. Talk to people about your concerns and how you are feeling and consider that you are also allowed to set boundaries and opt out of difficult discussions.

Click here for more information on how to access the National Eating Disorder Information Centre’s hotline and online chat for eating disorder specific support.



Bonus tip! Chrome has an extension called Netflix Party that allows you to simultaneously stream Netflix with friends. It has a chat window & pay/pauses for everyone watching so you can enjoy together! Pretty cool, right?

  1. Remember the importance of nourishing yourself. You’ve come a long way in establishing what your relationship with food is today. Take a moment and acknowledge your progress. Remember that it is constantly changing and evolving. At this time, grocery stores can be anxiety provoking and availability to some of your favourite foods may be limited. Come back to the principle that food is food, and that every day we should do our best in not labelling foods good or bad. All foods have a place. It is okay if you’re eating differently than usual right now. It’s normal that you may be eating foods you wouldn’t ordinarily be eating, eating more than usual or eating at unfamiliar times. Have compassion for yourself. This may be a triggering time. Reach out to us if you need help.
  1. Try to do some activities that you enjoy. Go for a walk with family members. Think about what you may want to work on personally and write down your thoughts. Learn a bit of coding while you have the time. Experiment with a new skill such as crocheting. Do some spring cleaning while listening to music. The benefit of right now is the time we’ve been gifted with. Create a vision board of all you desire with pictures and words from old magazines. Try painting a masterpiece or find a creative ‘Do It Yourself ‘project on Pinterest. We like this one.

Link: https://www.thinkmakeshareblog.com/macrame-keychains/#_a5y_p=6450821

We are going to get through this! This too shall pass. And when it does, we will be stronger for it. If you need additional support, please contact BANA at 519-969-2112 or info@bana.ca. You can also access the NEDIC hotline or chat, learn more here.

Link: www.nedic.ca