Self-isolation looks different for everyone. Some of us are grouped with our families; by now, we’re probably all sick of each other and desperately want to take shelter in a good coffee shop. Some of us are completely alone, and would give just about anything to get out and see our friends. Whatever your situation, there are ways to make the most of this interesting time without completely losing our heads.
What’s important during self-isolation is that you do things which benefit your physical, emotional, and mental health. Binge – eating and sleeping all day may be fun, but it won’t bring you happiness in the end. So here are a few ways that I personally keep myself from losing it during self-isolation and social distancing. Perhaps you’ll find a few of them helpful, too.
1. Set Goals.
I am highly-goal oriented. Often, the thing that gets me out of bed in the morning is my compulsive need to check off the boxes in my checklist, a part of my personality which I exploit every single day.
When I feel like I can’t get anything done, I write it on my checklist, and suddenly I REALLY want to get it done. This makes things that are difficult or tedious so much easier to tackle, even on the bad days. And at the end of the day, when I see the big block of things that I’ve accomplished, I go to bed feeling happy.
Now what kind of goals should you set? That’s entirely up to you, but here are a few suggestions:
- Health goals, such as running or yoga
- A list of things I’ve wanted to do but haven’t (for me, this consists of a ton of crafts I neglected to finish because I ran out of time)
- A list of places in my house that need to be deep-cleaned
- Organizational goals
- Goals related to education/self-betterment
These are just some of the things which make it onto my daily to-do list, but they are things which I enjoy doing (or in some cases, simply getting done) and crushing these goals helps to raise my spirits.
2. Schedule Marathons
No, not the running type – although those are good, too.
Movies, TV shows, web series, you name it – these forms of entertainment help give our minds a break from the stresses of real life but suspending out disbelief just for a moment. While I don’t think it’s okay to run away and hide from our problems, I do think that giving our brains space to rest is a very good thing.
Currently, my brother and I are working our way through all of the Marvel superhero movies in chronological order. It’s a daunting feat, I know, but I figured that since we’re both stuck inside most of the time, we’ll have plenty of time to get it done.
On top of being highly entertained (because even at their worst, Marvel movies are entertaining on some level), I get extreme satisfaction from checking the titles off of my list as we get through them, which is sort of like a double-whammy in the goal-getting regard. The best part about this is that after Marvel movies, there are plenty of other series I can’t wait to dive back into, and watching them all from the beginning is immersive and a ton of fun.
What are you currently watching?
3. Burn through some of your to-read list
Yes, there’s a pile of books in my room taller than I am with a sticky-note with the words “to read” written on it. And yes, most of those books have been there for years.
One of the really great things about being stuck inside is that I can close my door and no one will bother me for hours. This means that that pile of books is growing smaller and smaller. Which means that when they finally let me out again, I’ll feel slightly less bad about buying more books.
4. Start a new hobby!
Plenty of my friends are starting things right now that they’ve always wanted to try but never had the time to attempt. Some of them are painting. Others are playing guitar. Still others are learning how to cook, or make extremely good cups of coffee. My one friend is perfecting her pasta-making art.
I personally have hopped back into my puzzle obsession, which sounds cliché, except that it kills hours of my time while helping me organize my mind. The point I’m trying to make here is that the people closest to me are realizing that they have this time to do whatever they want with it, and, unsurprisingly, it’s making them pretty happy!
Self-isolation is rough, my friends. Many of us, even us introverts, are starting to really feel the effects of being alone and away from our loved ones. But focusing on the negatives will make time see slower and, from a mental perspective, will only make things worse.
My hope for you is that you will be able to make the most of this out-of-the-ordinary time to do some extraordinary things. Maybe you discover your hidden talents. Maybe you re-discover an old passion. Maybe, just maybe, there’s a blessing here in disguise, and you find it just by staying creative and refusing to give up.
We on the Anxious Introvert’s platform are here for you, and keep you all in our thoughts and prayers. It is our hope that we will all be together again soon, but until then, don’t forget to have a little fun!
What sorts of things keep you entertained? We can’t wait to hear from you!