Keep Calm and Quarantine On: Practical Strategies
Coronavirus (Covid-19) is a reality. Restrictions on our lives are happening and some panic is expected. However, I want to give you some techniques and tricks to help you find peace where you can.
Write one thing you are grateful for everyday. If you can, make it as visible as possible. If you have dry erase markers, write them on your bathroom mirror so you can be reminded every time you wash your hands. You can also use sticky notes, paper and tape, etc. You can also use a chalkboard. If you are living with others make this a household project. Keep your gratitude list together and visible. Seeing what others are grateful for can help you identify more positive things that are still present or coming from the current global events.
Turn Off the TV
Well, I really mean the news. Pick one time a day to catch up on the news. This way you are informed about the new suggestions and necessary alerts, but we DO NOT need to have the news networks on constantly. News channels can be a source of stress in normal situations, so it is no surprise that stress can be heightened now.
It is easy to become consumed with our immediate needs and the needs of those of our family. This is not only a way to become anxious, but it can keep you in the anxious cycle. Remember, there are others out there who are feeling the same way. Be proactive and give them a call. You will feel better because you got out of your head, and they will feel better because they know someone thought of them. Another way you can be kind is during those times you do venture out. Resist the temptation to have tunnel vision and only think about yourself and the mission at hand. Take a few days ago, my husband and I were at our third grocery store looking for water. We were tired, hungry, and worried that we would have find a fourth store. As we were walking up a car stops near us. The gentleman driving the car made this request of us: "Please be kind and take up a couple of carts, there are none inside ." So we did. We wouldn't have even thought of that. And if you are worried about us touching the handles, we took precautions. I used hand sanitizer on the handles and we washed our hands afterwards.
Distract Your Thought
If you find yourself still having the negative thoughts, distraction can be a very helpful way to stop the cycle. Right now you can go on any social media platform you are a member of or do a quick search and find activities to do while quarantined. The ones I've come across range from cleaning out the pantry and cabinets to reading the books on your shelf you just haven't gotten around to yet.
Whether it is for our children or ourselves, routines can help us cope with uncertainty. It fills our day up, it provides some sort of normalcy and predictability, and it gives us something to look forward to. I've seen many schedules out there on the internet. My advice is to find a few that have some interesting and doable items and then adapt it to you and your family. Also, part of a routine is getting ready in the morning, having meals at similar times of the day, and going to bed at your normal time. These aspects of a routine can be VERY important for self-esteem and circadian rhythm consistency.
I hope these help whether you are facing self-quarantine, restricting your contact with the outside, or know someone who is.