At the moment the world is a weird, angry and lonely place. Everyone is terrified about the next steps, what will happen to their livelihoods, family and financial states. I’ve been at home for three weeks now. And I’m currently out of work and I’m having a difficult time. So I wanted to share with you some tips for self care in self isolation to help alleviate the stress a little. There’s nothing crazy here — just reminders to keep going!
This sounds a little bit weird, I know, but I’d been in self isolation for three days before I realised I hadn’t showered or brushed my teeth. Is that gross? It sure is. But sometimes — especially when you deal with depression — when you’re isolated, you forget or actively can’t be bothered to keep up hygiene simply because you’re not in the realm of the public for a while. Now, I totally get that point of view, but keeping showered helps immensely with mental health. So drag yourself into a shower or a bath, get cleaned up and reap the benefits. And brush your teeth! I swear everyone I’ve talked to in isolation has forgotten to brush their teeth a few times.
Look Good, Feel Good.
I’ve mentioned before that all types of self care are valid and useful. And at this time it’s ringing just as true. If you feel better for putting a face mask on and having a luxury bath with candles, that’s a great way to unwind and keep yourself happy! Occupational Therapists in mental health hospitals use this often to brighten up people’s day. After 14 days inside I finally put on some makeup and clothes, and it really did help me feel myself again.
In times like this where there’s nothing but uncertainty and fear, what harm will a bath and some nice clothes do? Especially when your products can be bought by small businesses which will help them through this tough time.
Having a routine is something that is currently saving my arse in isolation. The first week I just did whatever I wanted, because I didn’t know what to do. And I found that I just created chaos, mess and forgot to take my medication. Implementing a routine gave me the chance to wake up, take meds, do chores and even get yoga and a workout involved in my day. Structuring my day like this helps me with productivity and stops me from just drinking coffee and playing Animal Crossing all day.
It doesn’t have to be a particularly strenuous routine at all, remember. You can simply just set a time for waking up and going to sleep. But a small amount of structure can really help. My routine consists of waking up at the same time,
Keep Busy, and do something you’ve always wanted to do.
Amongst all the anger and the worry is a little glimmer of hope — you’re currently not doing anything for a little bit. So why not enjoy it as much as you’re able to? Another therapy used by OTs in hospital is keeping patients busy. This can be with crafts, baking and general things to help their day-to-day life.
Self care in self isolation is so important, and keeping busy will help you from being utterly bored of everything in your life. Why do I know this? Because without keeping busy, I’d have probably died of boredom by now. Having small projects to work on, wether you’re working from home or not just keeps your mind sharp and you interested in what you’re doing.
Don’t Pressure Yourself.
You don’t have to do anything at this time. You don’t have to learn a new language. Don’t have to start the side hustle. And you certainly don’t have to use this time off to sort your life out. Don’t feel pressured and don’t pressure yourself to do anything you haven’t got the mind to do right now. We’re not on holiday, and we don’t owe our time to anyone other than ourselves. Simply just surviving is enough right now, and you’re doing great.
What are your tips for self care in self isolation?
I’d love to hear how you’re all doing with this situation at hand — let me know in the comments! You can also see my post on beating the January Blues which also works here.
And as always, friends — stay safe and stay home.