During a time of such uncertainly and chaos, it’s important to decompress and concentrate on being positive. Helen Lee Schifter, a health and wellness connoisseur, has developed a routine that has helped many people not only survive but also enjoy their lockdown lives. Stress and anxiety are inevitable during this time. With her experience in increasing physical and mental productivity, she recommends having variables in daily routines that remain constant. Her step by step plan helps focus in on parts of life that can help calm down the mind. Here’s what Helen says can save a mind from turmoil and indeed make one feel happier, even under these less than desirable circumstances.

Step 1: Plan the day

Although it may seem silly to have a schedule when one is unemployed or down in the dumps, it’s not. Helen’s advice is to try and take on the day, no matter how hard it may seem. Having anxious moments and feeling overwhelmed by unresolved issues is part of being human. However, polishing a routine can help the mind feel accomplished at the end of the day. Setting goals such as; drink a gallon of water, or complete a work task by 3 pm, will add structure to one’s day and increase productivity. She also says how important it is to plan time slots for meditation. In fact, she has used Crunchbase and LinkedIn to share different tips about how one can go about providing this sort of structure.  The ancient practice has been used for thousands of years to reduce blood pressure and aid with mental health. Whether having an hour by hour plan or just a general set of goals to achieve, it’ll help calm any perturbation.

Step 2: Take a break

With a disconnect from work and at home life becoming very common for most families, it’s important to step away from computers and phones. Depending on a person’s location, going outside for some fresh air may not be the safest option. Helen, who spends a lot of time in New York City, crafted a plan that helps those from skyrises to farms. Reconnecting with one’s body by Jin Shin Jyutsu can help physical and mental health tremendously. This quick method relieves the body of unwanted energy and reinstates balance back to the soul. Helen starts by labeling each finger with a different stressor and then clenching them for 1-2 minutes with the other hand. Cleverly, a popular YouTube channel has demonstrated an example of Jin Shin Jyutsu here.

With her passion for health and wellness growing, the practice of yoga has also become a crucial part of her routine. Helen recommends that practicing inversions can stimulate the body to focus on only one thing. Thus, it reduces stress and can make quarantine much more enjoyable. The beauty of yoga is that there are so many variations to it. It can be done in a very small space, or a secluded area outside. Helen says that as long as taking a break is part of a daily routine, the mind can become healthier. Indeed, part of taking a break can also involve intellectually stimulating activities. Reading has been a source of great comfort for many people during these difficult times. Casual reading consistent with one’s interests and passions can have the effect of reducing great deals of stress that would otherwise be percolating through one’s mind. Whether you’re interested in interior design and therefore a reader of Elle Décor or are instead interested in heavier and more serious reading concerning other subjects, the exercise can be incredibly cathartic.  

Step 3: Drink (or try) Tea

Tea is very underrated and has what seems to be an infinite amount of health benefits. Helen practices the art of tea ceremonies with her sensei because she comprehends how impactful it has been on her life. The four pillars of the ceremony; purity, tranquility, respect, and harmony, resonate with her. She recommends this graceful decorum to anyone struggling with stress and anxiety. With her world-renowned expertise, she urges people to incorporate tea ceremonies into their daily routine. Many struggle with their mental health during their “normal” lives, let alone when a pandemic hits. She understands that the unknown can be frightening which is why she constructed solutions to help people become happier and healthier. She’s written about some of these solutions she’s devised on her blog on Thrive Global.

In addition, with COVID-19 being a constant threat to society, filling the body with antioxidants found in teas can increase immunity. One of Helen’s favorite teas is green tea because of its remarkable advantages. It increases brain function; prevents cardiovascular diseases; and is great for the skin. Although COIVD-19 is unpredictable, having structured time to develop a healthier mind and body is so important.

After participating in these steps, in any order, the body should feel more at peace. Helen is an expert, so doing these steps is a very normal part of her own personal routine. It’s okay to start with one a day and later incorporate some of her advice into a schedule down the line. Her main goal is to help those struggling with this pandemic find harmony and calmness in any way possible.