The COVID-19 Pandemic has drastically changed our lives for the unforeseeable future due to the fact that life as most of us know it has been turned upside down. We’re working from home (WFH); home-schooling our kids; all sports events, concerts, festivals and conferences have either been postponed or canceled and the stock market reaches new lows daily. We’re dealing with a lot of ambiguity and uncertainty. Not to mention we’ve been told to practice a new concept called, social distancing. John Hopkins defines social distancing as “deliberately increasing the physical space between people to avoid spreading illness” and this week the White House and CDC (Center for Disease Control) released new guidelines on how social distancing and self-quarantining will slow the spread of COVID-19. So how do you stay busy when you’re stuck in the house.
Here are five tips for avoiding feelings of isolation and boredom while social distancing and self-quarantining.
1. Create a Daily Schedule
Most human beings are creatures of habit and appreciate routine. We thrive in an environment where we know what we’re going to do on a daily basis and at the least what we’re going to do during the current day. A daily schedule could help settle some of the anxiety we’re feeling by providing stability and helping us maximize our productivity.
2. Daily Themes
Daily themes can provide direction on how you will spend your free time or family time in the evening. Examples of themes include- art day, game night, card games, TicTok night, dance party day, audible or podcast night, karaoke night, movie night, poetry (think: haikus, limericks, ballads) and free night (we all need free time).
3. Daily Movement
It’s important that we continue to move. Social distancing may limit our ability to workout at the gym, but there are tons of at-home fitness opportunities. Walking is perhaps the easiest form of exercise and it’s known to have several positive benefits such as improving fitness, cardiac health, alleviating depression and fatigue, improving one’s mood and more according to Ann Green, M.S., past heptathlon world athlete, yoga teacher and fitness studio owner.
4. Virtual Connections
Technology has drastically changed the way we communicate with one another during recent years. Facetime, Skype, Google Hangouts and ZOOM are just a few of the platforms that make connecting virtually very easy from video conference calls, virtual happy hours, virtual coffees or more. You can also host virtual movie nights with programs like Netflix Party or compete in free, fun physical activity challenges with your friends and family. All you need is the internet, a device and a friend or family member to connect with.
5. Phone a Friend
Text and email might be your favorite ways to communicate, but when you’re home alone or your only interaction is with children a conversation with another adult can be a welcome change. Break your habit of texting and emailing and pick-up the phone for an “old fashioned” telephone conversation just might make your family members or friends’ day, especially those in the “elderly” category.