With Corona Virus a.k.a. COVID-19 lockdown affecting most of the world, here is my guide to surviving isolation. Its something I know a little too much about after my accident. I was placed in isolation for 6 weeks, unable to get out of bed and stuck in the hospital, if you haven’t read about it you can here: Accident Part 1 -Things Will Never Be The Same Again.
Here’s what I learnt:
- Sleep Hygiene – Wakeup and sleep at a normal time.
It’s easy to think you’re on holiday and let your sleeping pattern move later and later. Get up with the sun, start your day positive and the rest of the day will follow, I like to exercise and learn some Spanish.
I can’t explain this but the hours of sleep before 12 count double, don’t ask me why, I just know its true, the more hours of sleep I get before midnight the better I feel the next day.
- Keep off the alcohol and drugs.
Its a simple one and we all want to pass the time but they are depressants and it will catch up with you.
- Exercise daily.
This doesn’t have to be hard, long or stressful, just a little every day. At the moment I’m trying to do something every hour on the hour:
10 * Pushups
10 * Lunges (each leg)
10 * Situps
5 * Pullups
- Meditate twice a day.
Once in the morning and once before bed, I don’t know why it works but it does, it keeps the mind clean and healthy.
Morning: Here is a Morning Meditation YouTube playlist from Deepak Chopra.
Night: Here is a great Guided Sleep Meditation YouTube playlist from Jason Stephenson.
- Eat clean Food.
Keep food simple, if it grows, eat it. There is no pizza tree and cola doesn’t come out of the tap. Single-ingredient foods all the way.
- Get Outdoors!
It doesn’t matter where or how long, even popping your head out of the window or taking a walk to the local shop. The outdoors will clear your head and a little bit of sunlight will brighten the soul.
- Keep the mind active.
Pick up a new skill, re-learn an old one, read, blog, it really doesn’t matter. Keeping the mind active and stop it wandering into those dark areas.
For me, I will continue to learn Spanish, practice some Salsa and try to read all the books I bought and never got round to.
There are plenty of free courses at the Open University to continue learning.
Here is a great Salsa tutorial on YouTube.
- Avoid TV until its dark.
It’s too easy to sit in front of the TV all day and zone out but after a few days your brain starts to go flat, It’s like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it gets. Also, your sleeping pattern will start to get later and later and back to point 1, the hours of sleep before midnight are worth double.
- Social Connections
Catch up with old friends, an easy way is to go into WhatsApp or your texts and scroll to the very bottom and message the person who you haven’t talked to in years, you might be surprised.
- Avoid pointless scrolling on social media.
It’s easy to get carried away but in the long run, it will start to have an effect on your mental health.
Bonus Tip #11
Journal your day.
Try to get your thoughts down on paper and off your mind, they don’t have to be deep and meaningful but writing them down keeps the brain clear. A simple method:
3 Things you are grateful for
3 Things you will do tomorrow
3 Things you did well today.