By Raven Stein (she/her)
Let’s be honest. This sucks.
This piece is geared towards folks who are stuck at home (and possibly on the verge of making drastic changes to their hair).
That being said, I want to say “thank you” to all of the essential workers who are on the opposite end of the spectrum right now. Being deemed “essential” and still having to live paycheck to paycheck is frustrating, gut-wrenching, and downright inhumane. But let it be known: we see you, and we are fighting for you.
To those at home right now, I ask that you put down the hair scissors, Nintendo switches, or whatever distraction you’re using right now. Lots of folks have recommended setting a “Quarantine Routine” to maintain some normalcy. I’d like to help you do just that.
Everyone is different, so I’m not going to give you an hour-by-hour manual of my typical day. However, these are the main components that I’ve found helpful:
Get dressed in the morning. It doesn’t have to be a suit and tie or a blouse... Honestly, you can change out of your PJ’s into a pair of sweats or leggings. Just that transition from sleepwear to day clothes can make all the difference!
Take care of your body
Unless HIIT is your thing, don’t listen to the online gurus. Do something you ENJOY. Lift weights, do some cardio, or some yoga! If you want to go for a walk or a run, wear a face mask and don’t touch any outside surfaces.
Fuel your body.
Try to maintain your typical eating schedule— and eat breakfast!! Not a fan of cooking? There’s no shame in using quick recipes with 6 ingredients or less! Here are some easy recipes from Tasty.
Monitor your water intake. Keep a glass or bottle of water nearby so you remember to sip throughout the day!
Shower. Regularly. Please.
I definitely get it, depression and/or anxiety makes even the smallest of tasks seem impossible. And right now, our mental health struggles are at an all time high. If you only take one suggestion from this piece, let it be this.
Take care of your mind
Everyone’s suddenly doing puzzles.
For good reason! If you have time, pull one out and test your brain. If you don’t have any physical puzzles, there are tons of apps, and jigsawexplorer.com has some great ones, too.
Read those books that have been collecting dust for some time now.
Take care of your soul
You don’t have to break out the incense & become one with the Earth. Just take a few minutes to check in with yourself. Practice deep breathing & do this daily check-in.
Do something you enjoy!
Think of or write down at least 3 good things that happened in the past 24 hours. Reflect is a great journaling app available on Apple and Google Play.
Take care of your surroundings
Tidy up any clutter or messes in your immediate area.
Clean light switches, door knobs, remote controls, and the device you’re reading this on! Here are some cleaning tips from the CDC.
Do your laundry... and put it away once it’s done.
If you have pets, clean up their habitat.
Take care of your loved ones
Call (yes, call) friends or family you haven’t talked to in a while.
Send a friend a funny video.
Remember: check-ins don’t have to be obvious. Even little things like this will let your loved ones know you’re thinking of them.
Have some fun
Watch a movie or a few episodes of your favorite TV show. YouTube videos are acceptable as well.
If you’d like, scroll on social media for a little while. TRY to keep it under 20-30 minutes...
Dog owner? Take them outside and run around for a bit!
Listen to some music & dance around!
Write down your own daily routine/goals and keep it where you will see it! Remember: not every day is going to consist of ALL of these things. It’s okay to have some “lazy days” here and there. We’re all going to have days where we stay in our PJ’s and watch Netflix all day and eat crap because we’re bored and neglect our workouts and distract ourselves from the world.
There is nothing wrong with you for needing rest from all of this. It’s really hard. Just be mindful and avoid falling into the trap of enabling not-so-great behaviors for more than a day or two. We’re with you, and we will get through this together.