The new normal of being under quarantine in our home because of COVID-19 (coronavirus). 2020 has us using the term social distancing (keeping space between yourself and others outside your home) putting into action. The government told us to virtually communicate with our family, friends, and co-workers. In this post: I talk about mental health, social distancing, working from home (WFH), and ideas/suggestions to keep you busy while at home.
So I’m no doctor and have no medical degree besides my bachelor’s degree in Psychology. I have watched videos and read different articles on what COVID-19 is and the different symptoms. I recommend watching this video that a friend sent me. It really explains in basic terms the difference between COVID-19 and the Flu. I know a lot of us are confused and scared when we display certain symptoms that possibly can between COVID-19 (pictured above), flu, cold, and allergies. This is not the time to panic but to stay calm and assess your symptoms.
A lot of doctors are allowing you to contact them through telemedicine (virtual appointments). Virtual appointments allow you to stay quarantined in your house. It also is the proper way at the moment to communicate with a medical professional on your symptoms. You can then receive a proper diagnosis from your doctor. The stress of all of this has lead to coping with not only COVID-19 but our mental health.
COVID-19 & Our Mental Health
Most of us were not prepared to be in our house longer than about two weeks or so. At the end of March 2020, we were told by the government to stay under quarantine until April 30. We have no idea if it will get extend past that date. For myself and others who deal with anxiety, depression, and any other mental health issues. This puts us at greater risk of our mental health issues to escalate because we are dealing with the unknown and now have to transition to a new normal of staying home.
Personally, I deal with anxiety and depression on about a daily basis. Sometimes my anxiety is higher than my depression and vice versa. It is a constant battle between the two depending on the situation and environment. I have found different coping mechanism especially during this time to assist with bring them down a notch and trying to keep them in a neutral state.
Coping Mechanisms While Under Quarantine
- My Therapist (I still have virtual therapy sessions with my therapist weekly)
- Emotional Support Helplines (pictured above for New York State) (I am sure that you can find one for different states on google)
- Facetime, Zoom, Phone & Texting Conversations with Family, Friends, and Co-Workers.
- Coloring Books for Adults (helps people with Anxiety) (You can order them from Barnes & Noble and Amazon)
- Meditation, Sage, Cleaning, Burning Candles, and playing your favorite music (A great way to release any negative energy from your aura and home)
- Do not stay in your pajamas during the day.
- Home Workouts: I use the Nike Training App (They have upgraded all members to premium for free during COVID-19)
- Take a walk around your block if you can every couple of days but keep 6 feet away (social distancing)
- Pick up a new hobby/interest
Social Distancing & Work From Home
The biggest thing that is going to help us is social distancing. We have to remember that we need to stay home and only go outside if you are an essential worker or need to buy groceries. It has been hard for me to stay home when I am used to being outside more than in my apartment because of work and socializing with friends. If you use the different coping mechanisms above to help you stay productive then you will feel less anxious about going outside. Also, remember that when you do go outside that you keep six feet away from other people.
As we continue to go through quarantine, we all are adjusting to working from home (WFH). I know some of us are not use to working from home, constantly but here is some practices and tips that I have been using.
- Do not work in your pajamas, try to put on regular clothes
- Do not work in your bedroom/bed. Try to find an alternative work space in your home.
- Create a morning routine.
- Try to keep a regular work day schedule with a lunch break.
- Still communicate with your co workers about work and regular conversation (not related to work).
We do not know how long this quarantine will last or if this will truly be our new normal. The best thing to do is to follow protocol and precaution that has been given to us by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Show gratitude and appreciation to all the essential workers, medical professionals, and more that continue to work around the clock to help us fight COVID-19. If you have any other tips and suggestions to help everyone during this time, do not hesitate to leave a comment.