The time has come that we must lock ourselves away to stop the spread of Covid-19. There are certain pros and cons to both living alone and with others at this time, if you live alone we recommend reading our blog on the Top 5 Ways to Enjoy Your Own Company, if you live with others this one is for you.
It’s no secret that the next few weeks are going to be tough and a little challenging to say the least, but there are some things you can do to make the time spent at home a little brighter and ensure it doesn’t damage your relationships. We recommend following the 10 steps listed below to maintain a smooth isolation period.
1) Accept Reality & What is Happening
There is no escaping it, every single person is going to be affected by the virus in one way or another. Whether we like it or not we must accept that our daily routines will change, whilst this change is temporary, burying our heads in the sand won’t help when it comes to this situation. We must be strong, stay at home and deal with the situation like the proud nation that we are.
It’s also important to understand that with the best will in the world arguments at this tense time are more than likely, the most important thing is how you you deal with them. Just try to remember that your significant other is not to blame for what is happening, they probably feel just as trapped and anxious as you do and would more than likely appreciate being granted a ‘grace period’ at this time, whereby you are understanding of any slight behavioural changes that may seem out of character for them. A great mantra for us all to live by at this time is to treat others how we would like to be treated and we should all get along just fine.
2) Embrace a New Routine
It is commonly known that the brain loves patterns and hates randomness, so setting yourself a routine can really ease the mind. This is especially true for children, but is also very helpful for adults too. This might sound silly as your spending all day within the same four walls but is the key to success when working from home. It can be as simple as waking up at the same time each ‘working day’ or as regimented as scheduling each and every hour, whatever works for you! If there is more than one of you working from home try to carve your time spent together and time spent apart, for example, you will spend time working in the mornings and then at 11am you all sit down and have a coffee together for some quality time. If you have children that need caring for you could also schedule time slots for spending time with them, it can all be worked out with a little planning.
3) Designate Areas Of The House For Activities
Similarly to the points above, change must be embraced and planned for. If your job dictates that you must now work from home it is a good idea to set yourself up an office or office space, and keep work to that area only. Even if you live in a studio apartment, say that the kitchen table is for work and the bed/couch are for chilling. This will help get your brain in gear when you’re working and similarly help you relax and unwind once you have finished. It’s all psychological and might sound simple but trust us, it works. (This blog is currently being written from a dinning table, I only sit here to work, nothing more and nothing less!)
4) Communicate With Each Other
This is a very important skill for any family/relationship but has never been as important as it is now. We will all have heightened emotions, frustrations, worries, pet-peeves and so on. It’s important to voice how you are feeling, a problem shared is a problem halved and it can be comforting to hear that you are not the only person feeling the way you do. We are going to be spending a lot more time with those we live with, the likelihood is that we will discover a handful of traits that we may have never noticed they had before, whilst some of these may be great some may really get on your nerves. Be mindful that if you nit-pic those you live with you might damage your relationships rather than strengthen them. For example, feeling stressed about not being able to leave the house is very different to feeling stressed about the way your significant other slurps their tea, be mindful not to offend anybody over petty things or you will have even more problems on your hands.
5) Set Family To-Do’s
Each and every house hold has a list of chores that keep things running smoothly. This can be a great way to keep everybody happy. For example your daily list could look include anything from doing the dishes to alternating who makes dinner, this will prevent all the pressure falling on one person and can prevent tensions from rising.
6) Set Goals
You will have more time on your hands over the next few weeks, that is inevitable. Use this time wisely, it is a golden opportunity to get things done that you never normally have time to do. Setting goals for the entire household can be a great way to give everybody a focus and achieving them can give us a feeling of satisfaction and pride. For example, set aside one afternoon to gut the garage or paint the garden fence, it’s an activity you can all do together and it’s a productive goal for the whole family. You could also try:
- redecorating the house
- spring cleaning the kitchen
- doing the gardening
- clean the gutters
- Be your own window cleaner
- Learn to make a new family dinner recipe
7) Don’t Work All The Time
Whilst it is important to keep working if we can, you will most likely develop brain fog if you try to pass the time by working every second. Working in chunks of time is a great way to ensure your brain has a break, therefor putting you in better spirits to spend quality time with your family. Take time to get outside in your garden and enjoy the sunshine, read your favourite book, do a home workout or take up a whole new skill set! Give your brain regular breaks, you’ll feel fresh and rejuvenated when it comes to work and play!
8) Learn New Skills
Leading on from our previous point, learning new skills are a great way to keep moral up in your house hold. You could do all of these as a couple or an entire family (depending on who you live with):
- Learn to cook something new
- Learn to bake something new
- Do home workouts
- Learn a new language
- Learn to play an instrument (if you have them in the house)
- Learn to skateboard
- Do family yoga
- Learn to Knit
- Give each other manicures (men, there’s no shame in having presentable nails!)
The list goes on and on!
9) Be Kind
Regardless of who you may be sharing your home with during the self-isolation period, all relationships are improved with kindness. All of us will feel the negative pull of the next few weeks, even those children who are delighted about not having to go to school will likely feel a sense of fear about what is happening. Potentially the most important skill we should all practise in the weeks to come is kindness. Be kind to those you live with and to your self, give yourself a pat on the back each day for what you’re dealing with, you are strong and can make it through this temporary period! Remember, if you feel like you’re about to snap at anybody take a deep breath an have 5 minutes outside on your own, it might just reset your head and leave you feeling a little better.
We hope this helps some of you over the weeks to come. We will get through this pandemic and we will come out of it stronger. We hope each and every one of you is safe and well at this time.
Lots of love,
The Silver Mushroom Team