The world as of March 2020 is pretty much on lockdown. Those of us who can’t work from home or are key workers, now find ourselves stuck indoors for probably 80% of the day. And we all know why, I do not need to state the obvious. Although initially it may seem quite fun and freeing to have all this spare time, those who have anxiety and mental health issues (including me) are dreading all this time in solitude. My anxiety when it was bad stopped me from me going out and the more I stayed indoors, the worse it got and the more I did not want to go out.
So what do those of us who are not full time bloggers or work from home do? How can we structure our days and fill our time? Well I have a few handy tips and hints for you.
Stay connected – Facetime, Skype, Zoom, Instagram stories, Whatsapp, text messages, old fashioned phone calls. All of these things the majority of us have at our fingertips. Use them. I even signed my parents up to this way of life as they are in a vulnerable group so I won’t see them for three months or more. This way I get to SEE them not just HEAR them. In the last week I have had Skype calls with family, Whatsapp calls, voice notes and video call on Zoom (yes I had never heard of it before all this either) with friends and it makes you feel so much better. Make that call, send that message. It is really important.
Exercise – We are allowed out to exercise. Use it wisely. Go for a walk even if its just around the block. Get fresh air and take in the world around you. May I remind you to stick to the 2m social distancing rule please! Go on YouTube and do some workout videos. A lot of companies are offering free access to their videos and there is so many things you can do in the comfort of your own four walls. It is important to keep moving when indoors.
Sign up for a course – If like me you are not able to work from home, sign up for a free course. Vision2learn is a good one if you are eligible (being on a low income is among other eligibility criteria). I did a Business and Administration course last year and it will look good on your CV and gives you a sense of purpose as well as learning self discipline which employers love.
Listen to music/watch videos – Music is such a massive passion for me and I really feel for all the musicians that have had to postpone or cancel their tours and gigs. I was meant to be going to see a band this Friday but it has been postponed until further notice. However Instagram is becoming quite the hotspot for singers and bands to put on live performances. So far I have watched One Republic, Years and Years, We Are Scientists and also Gary Barlow is uploading a duet every week day at 5pm. Its great! I also have pencilled in to view a performance by The Royal Ballet this Friday at 7pm on YouTube. So much out there to watch and listen too.
Do nothing – One day a week allow yourself a day of nothing. Stay in your PJs and watch TV/Netflix/Amazon/DVDs. Put on a face mask, eat some chocolate and just do nothing. Its okay and its important.
Save money – All of this self isolation means no socialising, no going out or spending money on lunches and coffees. So how about putting what you normally would spend on those things aside? Then when all this is over or at least the rules have been relaxed you can treat yourself to something really nice for getting through this in one piece!
Hope these ideas help or inspire you. Please stay home, stay safe and look after yourself and one another.