As we all adapt to a new normal, it’s important we all keep talking about our experiences and the things we have found useful to cope in these unprecedented times. With that in mind, here are just some of the ways I’m dealing with staying at home. Remember to keep checking in on your loved ones and sharing any advice you have too!
Accept that your emotions are justified
Staying at home can be a bit of an emotional rollercoaster, especially if you aren’t with family, friends or partners that you’re missing. If you have days when you’re lacking motivation, don’t be too hard on yourself. I don’t know about anyone else, but I have really productive days, and then other days I feel like I’m stuck in a rut when it comes to getting motivated and getting work done; I can’t focus at all. Whilst that can be frustrating, go easy on yourself – getting annoyed with yourself will only set you back even further. If you feel like you need a break to take some time for yourself, then do it. It’s better to get yourself in the right headspace for a productive stint of working than trying to produce work to the best of your ability when you genuinely don’t feel up to it.
If there’s one thing that’s really helped me – it’s exercise! Whether it’s using my daily outing for exercise or doing a HIIT workout indoors, it always leaves me energetic and ready for the day ahead. I find it benefits most when I’ve been at my laptop all day and need a break and some fresh air, or even when I can’t get motivated and I need to dig deep and find some energy. Making time for daily exercise also helps you to stick to a routine and a structure too which is especially helpful in making the days pass relatively quickly. If you need some exercise inspiration, check out one of my latest articles on getting fit for free!
If you’re a relatively motivated person, even despite the circumstances, avoid the temptation to spend all your time working. Whilst in the short term it sounds like a good idea to pass the days by working continuously and getting things done, in the long term it can lead to burnout especially whilst we can’t go out regularly. Burnout is a state of exhaustion caused by overworking, which can then have a negative impact on your immune system too. So, given the current circumstances, it’s vital you take time out to rest and recharge your batteries for the sake of both your mental and physical health. Make time to do things you enjoy, even if that’s just catching up on your favourite Netflix series! You can read up on how to beat the burnout in my latest article.
Stay in touch
Whilst we can’t (physically) spend time with anyone outside our household, we can still make the effort to stay in touch with our friends and loved ones thanks to modern day technology. The conversations we have now seem all the more precious, even if they are through the phone. Whether it’s a pub quiz via Zoom, drinks through FaceTime or even just a phone call, keeping in touch with others can help us to stay connected and boost our mood. Checking in on someone might just even make their day too. Make time regularly to catch up with friends and family and be sure to check in on anyone that you know might be alone or struggling during this difficult time. It’s important we all look out for each other! If you are feeling lonely at the moment, check out Malaika’s article on a guide to social distancing socially.
Keep to a routine
For me, the easiest way to make the days pass quite quickly and to stay motivated comes from sticking to a routine. This routine is made up of going out for a daily walk, doing some exercise, doing university work and taking regular breaks. I also set myself a target time to have my work done by, so then I can spend the evening chilling out and doing something away from my desk and work mode. You don’t have to structure your day too much – I don’t find it useful to allocate time slots for each of my activities and tasks because there’s no flexibility. However, creating to do lists and factoring in a mix of work, exercise, and rest will help to keep you focused in the long term.