Here are a few tips to help you, your colleagues, family and friends cope at this difficult time of social distancing, self-isolation and working from home.
Start your day as you mean to go on and get into the habit of having breakfast. The minute we have our first cup of tea or coffee, our bodies are up and running.
Get dressed, feel great and before you listen to or read any news, look in the mirror and say something positive to yourself, such as “today will be a fun day” or “I will be brilliant today”. Even if you feel a little bit silly, do it every day and you’ll start to see the impact it has on the way you feel.
Now more than ever we need to set ourselves boundaries. With many of us having to work from home, and some of us having to juggle this with home schooling children at the same time, it’s important to try and set yourself clear work/home life boundaries. There are a few simple ways you can do this: keep your morning routine intact, create visual cues such as hanging your work schedule or a ‘do not disturb’ sign to let the rest of your household know when you’re not to be interrupted, and block out a section of your day to have some ‘me time’.
If you’re at home with loved ones, it’s very easy to lash out at those closest to you when things get on top of you.
An easy and fun way to get around this, is to make up a fictitious person and blame them for all those annoying things that keep happening. Why not blame Bob for leaving dirty coffee mugs out, and laugh at the various scrapes Bob gets us all into?
Set your alarm clock and make sure you move every 40 minutes; march on the spot, do a stair/step challenge, or do a few star jumps to get that heart racing! Now is the chance to move as much as you can at home – do it and you will feel so much better.
There are various live online workouts you can join in with, giving you the illusion that you’re in a gym class! Many of these live workouts are available on YouTube or Instagram, or take a look at the resources available on the NHS and simply have a scroll through and find one that suits your physical needs.
Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for our wellbeing1, and there are a few things you can do throughout the day to help this. Whether it’s on the balcony of a flat, in your garden or even through a window, get as much light as you can through the day (without breaking the rules), as it will help power up your sleep hormones that you need later in the day, allowing you a better night’s sleep.2
Also, try to stay off your tablets, mobiles and other electrical devices at least one hour before you go to bed, as these omit blue light which is known to negatively affect the brain’s natural sleep-wake cycles.1 Check out our blog on getting a better night’s sleep for more tips.
When you’re stuck at home with others 24/7, it can start to get mentally draining. Set a time for everybody to be alone at different times of the day. Go to a room and
enjoy doing nothing. Start practicing deep breathing for 4 minutes and then try to build it up to 10 mins. Calming your mind is really important during these tough times. To learn more about becoming more mindful, check out our blog on practicing mindfulness.
If you’re struggling with self-isolation life, don’t forget – you’re not alone. Talk about it with your friends and colleagues – it will help to get it off your chest and understand that we’re all in this together.