How I am staying sane through isolation
I'll be honest with you, during the first two weeks of isolation, I was a real-life slug! Most days I stayed in my PJs, dressing gown and slippers. Often I didn't shower till the late afternoon or evening.
I was adjusting to the new norm, trying to work out my new routine, as well as indulging in what I thought was the dream (staying in my PJs all day).
The introvert in me was actually looking forward to lockdown!
However, that didn't make it any easier to adjust to my new routine.
After these first two weeks, and the novelty of wearing my PJs all-day had worn off, I decided on a few non-negotiables to establish a new healthy routine for isolation.
Morning showers sound pretty simple to achieve, but when you only have to travel as far as your living room that day, it's easy enough to skip your morning shower.
I found that having a shower first thing set me up really well for the day. It puts me in a good mindset and ensures I definitely get out of my PJs that day.
After I'm awake and refreshed from my shower, I'm not tempted to get back into my PJs. Dressing a certain way really does have an effect on your mindset.
Think about it like this. When you come home from work after a long day, and you get into your loungewear, you're somewhat instantly more relaxed.
The same goes for in the morning when you get up and change from your PJs to your 'work clothes'. Your mindset is changed.
So if you are working from home, I do think it's important to put proper clothes on. I don't mean you have to put on a suit or a pencil skirt. Just something other than loungewear. For me, I like to put on a pair of pull-on trousers and a t-shirt, or a stretchy pair of jeans that's comfortable to sit in for hours.
Getting dressed properly completely changes my at-home attitude. I am way more productive when I put a simple outfit on, compared to when I stay in my tracksuit all day.
On the contrary to that, I sometimes put on my activewear first thing in the morning and work in that. It's comfortable to sit down in and is a reminder to me all day that I need to get up and move my body. It makes the decision to get up and go for a walk at lunch, that much easier.
Notice I said movement, not exercise. I don't want to push myself into habits that I won't stick to. I want to be able to maintain my isolation habits every single day. Research shows that habits which are performed every day are the habits that stick.
So for me, movement means either going for a brisk walk, yoga in my living room or strength training in my living room.
I do at least one of these every single day. And I track my progress on a habit tracker (blog post to come on this soon).
On the days when I am not working, I love to get cosy in the house with some comfy loungewear or my PJs in the evening.
In the past, I've always had mismatched PJs and loungewear, and hadn't thought much of what I wear around the house. But recently I've really changed my tune on that. I dress for myself and not others. I dress a certain way because it makes me feel good, not because of how it makes another person see me.
So I now wear matching PJs and loungewear because it makes me feel more put together. It can make those sloppy days feel a little bit less sloppy when you match your jumper with your joggers.
My posture hasn't been great since lockdown began. I'm guessing it's from increased time on the couch watching Tiger King (lol), as well as increased time on my laptop (working from my desk, couch or bed).
For the past week, I have started wearing my posture corrector brace again. I bought this off Amazon and it's so handy to have.
The brace helps to hold my shoulders back, as they naturally want to curl forward when I am working at the computer. I always wear it over an item of clothing so that it doesn't rub on my skin. I highly recommend this product if your shoulders tend to slump forward.
Regular Salt Baths
I love taking regular salt baths to help with my neck and back pain. Magnesium salts in hot water really help me with this.
I love bath time for a little bit of me-time as well. I like to just close my eyes and completely focus on the moment. It's my tiny moment of meditation.
What I choose to consume
I have always hated watching the news. However, I am always torn between knowing what's going on in the world and protecting my mental health (anxiety in particular.)
Alex and I have decided to watch the news every second day. We watch it for 15 - 30 minutes, and make sure we know if there are any new regulations in place.
This is a personal choice for me because I know how getting caught up in the news 24/7 can affect me mentally.
Also! We adopted a kitten, soooo.... he's making us smile from ear to ear every day!
I hope you are finding ways to adjust to the new norm.