The other side of isolation: learning to cope with life inside

young woman looking out of window, sad, coronavirus, stress

Within the current climate, many of us are on lockdown or self-isolation, and many are already beginning to struggle with feeling as though the walls are closing in.

There is a possible risk of people suffering from mental health issues, loneliness and the struggles of adapting to working from home. The feeling of being cooped up within our own four walls may be painful, and as a nation, we need to develop ways to ensure our isolation does not cause any lasting damage to our health.

Be busy, stay connected

Remote working is a challenge within itself. However, there are many benefits to working from home. These include the ability to select where we sit and how we sit, so make sure to adopt a good posture. You can also structure your day: little tasks, such as setting timers, could assist in your progression throughout the day. Once the time is up, you could review what has been completed, then take a break and then get back to work.

If you are unable to work from home, there are other options to keep you busy, such as cleaning and storing out those hidden draws. Utilise the time, have a clear out: it will help clear your mind as you feel you have completed the dreaded task that you have needed to do for some time.

Another fundamental approach is communication. Although we may be alone, it does not mean we can’t communicate. Engage in online forums and engage in discussion points, remembering to focus on positive things.

Many of us have elderly relatives who we are unable to visit; skype call them and email them if possible. Share the activities you are completing with your littles ones, as although they are unable to visit them, no one will feel they are missing out. Checking in with your loved ones is a must, making sure everything is ok and that that they feel supported despite the distance. Ensuring someone knows that they have someone available to talk to will help us all to ride this out.

Stay healthy

It is vital to develop a can-do attitude; listen to the Government’s guidelines and adopt healthy choices. Through this period, eating a balanced diet is vital to ensure we are meeting all the dietary needs of vitamins and minerals to remain healthy. However, from witnessing all the stockpiling at the supermarkets, understandably, this could be considered a quite challenging task. Therefore, begin meal prepping, creating a menu and even getting the children involved. This may assist in taking some pressure off as you can see what possibilities you may have lurking in your cupboard or freezer.

As we all know, the expectation is we should be drinking two litres of water a day, especially as now many of us are going to be less active. Drinking more water will keep you hydrated. Although we may be isolated inside, there are plenty of opportunities for us to keep fit with online fitness classes and workouts.

To keep the little ones happy, there are many different teaching resources available. Make their time indoors as fun as possible. Their iPads and the television should not be the only thing entertaining them while they are kept indoors. Consider creating a fitness routine with them, a dance video, make puppets and play hide and seek. Even consider getting out the good old fashion board games that may be lurking in the cupboard. Another suggestion is acting and creating a play. Watch a YouTube video and learn the lyrics. You could even attempt to make housework fun for them.

About the author

Natalie Quinn Walker is Blended Learning Tutor (Healthcare Management Programme) at Arden University. She is currently studying for a Ph.D., with a thesis focusing on domestic abuse. You can find her on Twitter @QUINNWA91648884.


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