With the winter quickly approaching, many people are wondering how they’ll get through another lockdown. The fear is greater in colder climates, and especially so for extroverts. Last spring was bad enough, and nobody wants to repeat that. Unfortunately, it may be unavoidable.
If you live with others, lean on them. Spend the kind of quality time together that you never had a chance to before. Moved back in with your parents? Get to know them on equal footing, as an adult. Even if you have a roommate you don’t know particularly well, maybe you can bear to watch a movie or TV show with them. Humans are social creatures, and any in-person contact is better than none.
Keep in touch with your friends and family that you don’t live with. If your area gives you the option to form a social bubble, take full advantage of that. Otherwise, video calls are a fantastic way to keep up to date with your pals. Find an excuse to virtually “meet” every week, like an Among Us game or a trivia night. For extra fun, issue a dress-up theme challenge. You’ll treasure the screenshots of these nights when you look back on the COVID days. Even texting is better than no communication. For a personal touch, send voice notes rather than written messages.
Stay active every day. This can be anything from a full calisthenics workout to a walk around your neighborhood. The idea is to keep the blood pumping and not let your muscles forget how to function. If you’ve ever thought of taking up yoga, Pilates, or hula hooping, now is the perfect time to start. Alternatively, do push-ups every morning and hang a pull-up bar in your door frame.
Don’t fall into the trap of eating away the days. Junk food is tempting, but try to resist. You’ll feel better after eating a salad than a burger. Since you’ll be at home, you’ll have time to cook all the healthy food you’ve ever wanted. You can experiment with different recipes or try baking your own bread.
If you’re working from home, don’t immerse yourself in your work. You still need a work-life balance, even if work and life are a lot closer to each other than usual. While you may think working more will be beneficial, you’ll find yourself stressed out and restless. Your manager may also start to expect more out of you without paying you more. Log off on time and don’t check your work email after that. And yes, that includes the entire weekend.
Get outside as often as you can. This will be harder when it’s snowy, but you’ll feel the positive effects of going for even a quick walk. A lack of daylight can interfere with sleep patterns, causes a lack of vitamin D, and even decreasing the function of the immune system.
If you do find yourself struggling, don’t go through it alone. Reach out to a friend or loved one and tell them what you’ve been experiencing. They may feel the same way, too. If the lack of sunlight gets to you, look into taking vitamin D or pick up a light therapy box. Don’t feel ashamed if you have to take more drastic steps, like breaking up a relationship or moving in with your family. The current times are not normal, and nobody is normal right now.
Your area may be able to avoid going into a second lockdown–or a vaccine may be on its way sooner than expected. Across the globe, everyone is united in not knowing what comes next but hoping for the best. If you do find yourself in isolation again, these tips should help you get through it.