Relieving Anxiety and Stress during the Covid 19 Pandemic

How do you relieve stress during a very stressful Covid 19 Pandemic when we are socially isolating, all of our favorite places are closed, and we are fearful that we too will become ill? I can assure you, I do not have all of the answers! However, I have some tips that have been helping myself and my family.

1. Meditation is always a good way to relieve stress. It's free and it can be done anywhere! Personally, I prefer meditating in the outdoors. There are less distractions in the great wide open then there are at home right now. Go out on your back porch, sit in the sun, close your eyes, and clear your mind!

2. Organize your life while you have the time! I always feel less stressed when I organize and finish projects at home that have been waiting for me to find the time to do them. Clean out your closet or pantry! Those have been waiting for me for a long time...now is as good a time as any to finish up those projects or start and finish a new project.

3. Get more sleep! If you don't have anywhere that you HAVE to be be right now, like myself, then sleep in late or go to bed early. Most of us do not get enough sleep on a daily basis. Now is the time to catch up. Go ahead, wear your PJs all day on a monday if you are working from home! Why not?

4. Exercise. This has been my biggest stress reliever. My kids have been trapped inside all day, just like I have been. They are so full of energy at the end of the day that they can't contain themselves. They are begging us to go and exercise with them. We have been playing tennis many nights....and guess what, the high school tennis courts are empty right now during the day! Middleville courts are fenced in, so plently of social distancing can be had. Go for a bike ride. The Paul Henry trail is a good one to utilize right now. Walk your neighborhood. Go hiking (with your mask on, of course, in the event you pass someone on the trail!) The Caledonia/Middleville/Hastings areas have some great hiking trails. Here are a few you can check out in the area: North Country Trail, Wildwood Trails, Paul Henry Trail, Yankee Springs Recreational Area, Rabbit River, Caledonia Lakeside Park, Deep Lake, Two Rivers Greenspace, Bysteweld Park.

Here is a list of all of the Trails at the Yankee Springs Recreational Area Trails:

Yankee Springs-Chief Noonday Trail--Trail Length: 4.00 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Equestrian Trail--Trail Length: 10.00 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Gun Lake Trail--Trail Length: 0.50 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Hall Lake Trail--Trail Length: 2.00 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Long Lake Trail--Trail Length: 5.20 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Mountain Bike Trail--Trail Length: 12.00 (Miles) Yankee Springs-Sassafras Nature Trail--Trail Length: 1.00 (Miles) Yankee-Springs-Deep Lake Trail-Trail Length: 4.00 (Miles) Below is the link to check out the individual trail info: https://www2.dnr.state.mi.us/parksandtrails/Details.aspx?id=511&type=SPRK Stay Home, Stay Healthy, and Exercise outside to help with stress relief!

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