During these uncertain times, it’s easy to find ourselves feeling trapped or at a loss for things that we can do. Here are some ideas for ways to keep busy while in quarantine! Remember that this will pass, we are all experiencing it together, and just because we are physically distancing ourselves does not mean we are not connected and supporting one another.
What is social distancing and why is it important?
Social distancing is a misleading term that implies we cannot maintain our social connections during this time. Social distancing actually means physically distancing yourself from other people (who live outside your home). The CDC recommends you stay at least 6 feet apart from others in order to limit the spread of the disease between people and surfaces. Make sure to wash your hands throughout the day and after touching things!
CDC Covid-19 Website https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html
In New York, all restaurants, fitness facilities, and non-essential businesses are closed. Many organizations have encouraged their employees to start working from home. Moreover, most schools have transitioned to online learning. But how can we stay productive when we’re not in our offices, workspaces, or classrooms? Here are some ways you can be your most productive self at home. For those of us that have to, working from home is not always the easiest task. Many distractions, whether it be dirty dishes in the sink, a show on Netflix you’ve been craving to binge-watch, and pets or family members in need of attention, can interrupt our work mindsets. The idea of the ‘work-life balance’ can soon become non-existent. Still, it is so important that we try our best to keep these entities separate and not fall into the chaos. Keeping some normalcy in our lives will help us cope and be productive when we need to be. It can also help us take our minds off of the worldly stressors. Here are some tips!
Get a jump start to your day
Starting the day early has been shown to help maintain productivity. In the early morning, there are less distractions to pull you away from your work- other roommates aren’t awake, there’s not much happening on social media, etc . Additionally, starting your to-do list right away can fire up a day of productiveness and help your mind focus on work rather than other things in your surrounding environment. It will also leave time to relax afterwards.
This tip is not only specifically helpful in a work-from-home situation but also helpful throughout your life. A study done on successful executives of top companies shows that 90% wake up before 6 am.
Maintain your day’s usual structure
By going through your day as you normally would, a firm structure is established that could prevent you from burning out. If your typical daily routine cannot be mimicked at home, many sources recommend creating an hourly schedule. Try dressing in work clothes-comfortable work clothes- to even dress the part!
Also, don’t do work in your bed- or even the couch! Though tempting, science shows that your brain associates these locations with relaxation, thus they hinder productivity.
Don’t get cabin fever
Staying at your desk all day at home and feeling like you are stuck inside can have serious negative effects on your mental health. Get outside as much as you can and take breaks when you need them. Countless research has shown that a simple walk around the house can clear your head and reduce stress.
Keep a positive attitude
We’re all in this together! You’re not alone in facing this challenging adjustment. Tackling your stressors, slowly, one by one, can lead to a feeling of great triumph. Take control of the things you can and let go of the things you can’t! With some extra time on your hands, you can use these moments to get in touch with yourself or socialize virtually with loved ones you haven’t spoken to in a while. Remember, the whole world is facing a crisis, it's okay to take it easy on yourself!
Other Quick Tips
Create a defined and separate work space
Listen to calm, noise-cancelling music
Put phone away in a drawer away from your desk
Don’t overwork- log off when you are supposed to
Politely remind others around you of your schedule
For those of us who want to stay informed about what is going on in the world, here are some ideas for ways to stay connected and up to date on coronavirus news. However, hearing constant news about the pandemic can be emotionally draining, so try to take a step back every once in a while and do something to relieve stress!
Ways to stay connected and informed
● Turn on the news on your TV
● Check the news online
○ Try to use reputable news outlets
○ Social media sites like facebook can often have misleading stories and articles
● Listen to podcasts
○ Informational podcasts
■ NPR “Coronavirus Daily”
■ “Home Cooking”
● Gives information about things to cook with food that’s often in the house
● How to cope with empty grocery stores
● Follow American Civic Association social media/Stay in touch
○ Offering free 60 day internet to students during outbreak
● Broome County Health Department
○ (607) 778-3930
○ On facebook
● Donate if you can! To local and global organizations or donate materials like medical gloves, masks and supplies.