It feels like we’ve been in COVID-19 induced isolation for months now, but at the time of writing, it has only been several weeks. Time has been both flying and standing still during this crisis, making it difficult to work, stay connected, and remind ourselves this too shall pass and we will come out the other side. Although we’ve been in lockdown for a while now, I have had conversations with many friends and family members who have had difficulty coping with staying at home and indoors for a large majority of their time. It got me thinking about what I am trying to do to stay afloat right now, and I wanted to share some ideas in case anyone reading this needs some.
My first piece of advice is to get outside for one hour a day if you can.
Whilst the weather might not always cooperate and there are different restrictions on going outside depending on which country you are currently in, if where you are allows outdoors time, you should take advantage of it. In the United Kingdom right now, they are allowing people to be outside for one hour a day for outdoor exercise and activity. I highly recommend you take advantage of it, if for no other reason besides your mental health. It is important to get some fresh air and clear your head while you are indoors most of your day. Exercise or a nice, long walk can really help with that. Whenever I can, I am going for walks around my neighbourhood, which has really helped me during all of this.
My next suggestion is to have a routine.
I know this is not as easy as it sounds, but trying to keep a semblance of normalcy during these trying times can help you stay relaxed, be more productive, and remain healthy. Try to wake up and go to sleep at the same time every day, have your pre-crisis mealtimes, and set aside portions fo the day for different activities. I know not everyone operates like this, but if you were someone who liked routine before COVID-19 hit, you should try to stick with that as much as possible.
Finally, it is vital we stay connected with our friends and family through technology.
Since COVID-19 spread across the globe, I have been speaking to my family back in the United States on a near-daily basis to check in with them and make sure they are doing well. I’ve also been trying to talk to friends whenever possible for the same reason and to remind ourselves we have people to support us. All of us feel isolated in one way or another right now, so keeping in touch with people across the world can break down barriers and show us people are there to help.
I hope some of these ideas and suggestions will resonate. As a global community at LSE and around the world, we are doing our best to stay connected with each other and manage this crisis in a way that helps us all. We will all come out the other side of this together.