Susan Martinez, MA, LMFT-S

With all of our routines and lives disrupted in one way or another during COVID 19, it is essential to be mindful of how we are adjusting and settling into a new, albeit, temporary routine and readjusting as restrictions start lifting on staying at home. The "Healthy Mind Platter" (David Rock and Dan Siegel 2011) suggests 7 aspects of daily life to tend to today and everyday. How  you meet each need and how much of each you need each day varies. I suggest considering each and asking yourself if you are getting too much or too little or perhaps you are even neglecting one or more entirely.  While staying at home and routines disrupted, these may be out of balance. You can balance them out. New solutions are in order. If you are finding that you are struggling during this time, you can reach out to myself or another therapist for counseling. Most of us are offering teletherapy. I offer video telehealth sessions, as do many of my counseling colleagues. A few weeks of staying at home has left many people experiencing a certain amount of stress, anxiety, depression, emotional tension and relationships strained. Relationships are strained with too much or too little time spent together. Parents are feeling stressed. Children may be acting out. Couples may find they have been irritable and arguing more.  Take a moment to consider the "Healthy Mind Platter". Are you getting enough daily servings of each?

  • Sleep Time: Go to bed and wake up the same time every day. Limit caffeine and alcohol. Try meditation to help you fall asleep or fall back asleep.
  • Physical Time: Exercise. Go for walks. Engage in a variety of exercise, indoor and outdoor.   
  • Focus Time: Focus on something challenging.  Engage in your work. Do a puzzle. Read a book. Take an online class. Learn something. Engage in a challenging task. 
  • Time-In: Meditate or pray. Check out a mindfulness based meditation app or draw upon your spiritual /religious practice. 
  • Downtime: Chill. Relax. Do nothing. 
  • Playtime: Play a game with someone in your household or online. Cards. Board games. Game Pigeon. Jackbox Games. House Party. There are many ways to connect and play face to face or online even while physically distancing.
  • Connecting Time: Reach out via phone, text, email, social media. Connect with others. Under ordinary circumstances this would be more face to face. During COVID-19, less in person. But we can still stay socially connected even while still physically distancing.
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