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How To Stay Productive While in Isolation

As we continue to adjust and mourn the many losses that have come with this virus, it remains more important than ever to keep your mental and physical well-being at the forefront of your efforts to regain a sense of normality.

As we continue to adjust and mourn the many losses that have come with this virus, it remains more important than ever to keep your mental and physical well-being at the forefront of your efforts to regain a sense of normality.

With COVID-19 now changing almost every single aspect of the lives we had before – many things that we took for granted now seem like a luxury. Being able to converse in an office space, taking public transport, walking around a shopping center, and relying on jobs that deal with other people or customer service seems like another lifetime ago.

While we all adjust to social distancing and self-isolation, as countries around the world come to an almost complete standstill, our mental health and productivity will no doubt go through some difficult changes. In an effort to help those struggling with self-isolating and working from home, here are a couple tips to get through the endless days of being at home.

(Note: For those who continue to work in the hospitals, grocery stores, and other essential places during these trying times, we pray and salute you in the hope that you continue to stay safe. For those who have lost their jobs due to the lockdowns and shutdown of businesses because of COVID-19 and do not have the luxury of working from home, you remain in our prayers in the hope that we will get through this difficulty together.)

Take Care of Your Mental Health First

Rushing into the stress of staying on top of work or feeling normal will make it even more difficult for you – instead, acknowledge the changes in both your life and society, and move on from there. It’s ok to feel scared or anxious, the entire world has almost changed overnight and its important for you to take time to adjust and acknowledge your fears and questions.

Make sure you’re talking to family, friends, or those close to you. Discuss your anxieties, and help each other by simply talking. Take some time out to do things that bring you comfort – there’s no shame in taking a day off to binge-watch your favorite TV series or movies, or read a book for hours on a sofa. Getting your mind relaxed to then deal with the new reality of working from home and self-isolating is incredibly important. Make sure those around you are also staying connected – we’re all in this together.

Don’t Treat Working From Home Like a Holiday

It can be easy to get in a rut when you’re at home and expected to continue doing work – and treating it like a mini-holiday will only make working from home even more difficult. Yes, it can be nice in the beginning to be in sweats all day, yes it can feel nice to sit on your sofa with a pet and eat out of the fridge whenever you want – but its important to remember that work is still work, no matter where you are.

It can take time to adjust, but remind yourself that you still have daily hours to commit to (how you spread out these hours can be up to you, especially if that helps you adjust better), and daily work to produce. Don’t get into the habit of being too relaxed at home, and if you have the space and ability to, it can even help to create a work-space in your home where you know you will get work done.

Try to Adhere to a Strict Schedule

Creating a daily routine can be incredibly beneficial – sometimes when working from home the hours seem to slip by quickly as you get distracted with home-related activities. By creating a schedule, even if it means writing something down with a lunch break and start/end times, you’ll be able to stay on track with work.

Remember to stay strict with your schedule too – the hours and days can seem to be melting together when working from home on an endless cycle, so remember that by creating a schedule you can bring a sense of control back into your life. Do it for your work productivity, your sanity, and your work colleagues as well – and remember that at the end of the day, life must go on despite these massive changes to our lives.

Remember to Exercise and Stretch During the Day

Being confined to your home or small flat might have felt like a prison sentence at first – and while we all adjust to a new lifestyle, its more important than ever to take care of our physical health. While for those of us in the UK we’ve been told to limit our exercise outside to once a day, this doesn’t mean it has to be a quick strut around the block – take advantage of a long walk (while social distancing), and when possible, try to go somewhere where there is green nature. The sight of birds, green grass, or even water can do wonders for the brain.

Stretching inside the house can also be highly beneficial when trying to stay productive – getting the flow of oxygen to the brain will help you think better and stay motivated. If needed, you can even include mini-stretching breaks in the daily schedules you create for yourself – remember, your physical and mental well-being is what will either help or ruin your work-from-home lifestyle.

Pick Up a New Hobby

Many of us feel anxious and claustrophobic simply because we were told to stay home – it can feel like we’re under house arrest and the thought of not knowing when we can freely move about society can be suffocating. To help keep your mind active (and distracted), try picking up a new hobby you’ve been meaning to get to.

Try learning a new language – there are plenty of free language apps and YouTube videos to get you started and this can be a great way to feel a sense of accomplishment and change throughout the weeks to come. Try learning some history, watch documentaries, or read the book you’ve been meaning to get to – all these things will help you with the knowledge that you’re still learning and being stimulated, despite being physically confined to the home.

At the end of the day, there’s no denying that COVID-19 has truly changed the way the majority of us live our lives. As we continue to adjust and mourn the many losses that have come with this virus, it remains more important than ever to keep your mental and physical well-being at the forefront of your efforts to regain a sense of normality. Helping those most in need, whether they be vulnerable persons in society, those who have lost their jobs to COVID-19, or those at the forefront of the essential workforce, should also be a priority for us all – and God willing, we will get through this stronger than ever.

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