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According to the survey done by the Academy of Medical Sciences in England, during this ongoing health crisis, those affected by emotional, behavioural and psychiatric disorders tend to outnumber those affected by COVID -19. In fact, the fear of contracting COVID -19 does not seem to be as great as the concern about the psychological and social impact of the pandemic. To address that, Cabrera notes that it's important to remain awake and embrace grief instead of ignoring it. This process will lead us to cultivate resilience and accept life's challenges and changes.
Wellness is made up of our mental, emotional, spiritual and physical health, and many of us have suffered greatly during the pandemic because of intense stressors in one or more of these areas of our wellbeing. The current situation has given more attention to all four areas of wellness. This can be a good thing. It reveals that we need to nurture our mental and emotional state. "A single mindful breath is a great start and can be of great benefit now and in the long run. You do not need a Zen retreat-like space to practise. Just sit where you are and breathe. Notice this moment. Notice a thought and let it pass. Greet yourself with compassion," says Cabrera.
Further, Cabrera affirms that wellness practices should not be complicated and should not weigh us down. "For me, it's sunshine, empathising with moments of laughter and joy, meaningful connections, walks, time in nature, colourful fresh foods, fresh garlic, multivitamins, fish oil, vitamin D, zinc, mushrooms, and elderberry. This may be different for you. It's wise to focus on the foundations of a nutrient-dense diet, adequate amounts of vital nutrients that keep our immune system functioning optimally, exercise and time outdoors, or bringing nature indoors when we must stay inside," she says.
The most important change Cabrera notes during the pandemic is that we are now aware of the need to be self-sufficient and to create ways to take care of ourselves holistically. "We are taking a lot into our own hands and making it easier to integrate wellness practices into our daily life by creating home gyms, meditation nooks, indoor gardens, and paying attention to the healing qualities of food," she says.
She received many questions from her clients about how to create time for mindfulness and meditation when all the work and kids are at home? "There are many ways to incorporate the formal practice into your daily life, such as: doing the dishes; can you do them with love in your heart? navigating a disagreement; can you take a breath and listen deeply- what is the true need?, procrastinating with work; what are you feeling about this project- what step might soothe your overwhelm?" In addition, Cabrera points out that meditation, even if it's only three minutes, is better than none.
Cabrera specialises in "mindfulness for modern life" - empowering people to move from stress and imbalance to a place of thriving and inner contentment. Resilience and prevailing joy despite life's challenges. "The unique fusion of my background in human sciences, mindfulness, meditation, holistic health, grief work, nutrition, ecopsychology, life coaching, and various personal life experiences - and how I utilise this combination in my work with clients really makes my method a bit different." She continues that It doesn't take long to notice a positive difference in the way we feel and in our relationships when we start practising mindfulness.
The other thing Cabrera emphasises that she thinks is vital in this modern life, and especially in the face of adversity, is the role of a healthy diet. "Holistic detox is keeping so many people's bodies strong and healthy during this pandemic and, of course, afterwards. It's a time to purge toxins and regenerate both physically and emotionally," she says. Cabrera believes this method is one of the most underutilised keys to great health and an extremely effective way to shift old habits and get on a path of longevity and rejuvenation. Cabrera notes, "It is almost imperative for our health to incorporate safe and holistic cleanses into our wellness practises in this day and age due to the high amount of toxins in our environment, food and water." One of the healthy food she introduced is Ayurvedic staple that will sustain us throughout our cleanse; which consists of Basmati rice, split Mung-Dahl beans, and a spice blend. The diet is designed to be easy for the body to digest and absorb.
In the end, Cabrera reminds us to take time for ourselves and everything else shifts." I continue to hope that everyone has a friend who encourages them to get help when they need it. I will continue to share the mental, emotional, and spiritual practices that have helped me through these things and bring these vital pieces of wellness into the world. I hope that the way our society is structured will improve to reduce burnout in key workers and caregivers."
+ Words: Alvia Zuhadmono, Luxiders Magazine
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