Life in quarantine while you recover from Covid or another contagious sickness can be stressful, but there are steps you can take to help make it less debilitating. Take good care of your emotional and mental health during this time to avoid the worst of the pitfalls associated with isolation and seclusion.
Here are a few ideas for staying sane:
Meditation is immensely beneficial for your mental health. This is why it’s an important part of many treatment programs for clients struggling with depression, anxiety, and more. When you feel stressed, anxious, or bored out of your skull, try meditation. This is an activity that allows you to sit or lie in a comfortable position and teaches you to refocus your mental energies. Most people who practice meditation daily feel rested afterward, almost as though they’ve had a refreshing nap. Meditation is an easy do-over for a day that’s going badly. (Read “How to Meditate: A Beginner’s Guide”)
It sounds silly, but learning how to breathe can make an enormous difference in how you feel. When we’re stressed, we tend to take shorter, quicker breaths that starve our bodies of oxygen. Learning to take deep, satisfying breaths can actually cause physical changes to take place, including lowering blood pressure and increasing feelings of calm and relaxation.
While you may not be able to see and interact with friends and family in person during quarantine, you can still stay in daily contact. Phone calls, video calls, online chat, and more are effective tools for staving off feelings of isolation and sadness. Take time every day to connect with the people who are most important in your life. You may even be able to gather in person so long as you maintain the proper social distance. Consider placing lawn chairs six feet apart in your backyard and inviting a few friends over to chat when you’re feeling your lowest.
Few things are worse than feeling like you’re moving through a day without purpose or motivation. Avoid falling into this common trap during quarantine because it can lead to feelings of sadness, aimlessness, and hopelessness. Assign yourself tasks that must be done daily to avoid inactivity. These can include reading a new book, learning a new skill, or teaching your kids a new game. Quarantine is a perfect opportunity to take up that hobby you’ve always wanted to try — quilting, fixing up your classic car, or learning a second language. Keep your days as structured as possible, so it’s easier to move through them to a dedicated end.