Getting cabin fever already?
There’s no denying sitting in the house all day isn’t particularly fun, but the important part is it’s keeping us safe as the virus reaches another peak. And as cabin fever sets in, its time to restructure our routines and finally implement a little bit of normality to our new ways of life. Here are Secret Manchester’s top tips to embracing life at home… Again.
1. Keep your usual alarm set
It might sound tempting to ditch the alarm and have a cheeky lie-in – and let’s face it, it’s usually everyone’s dream to do that every day. But too much sleep can actually make you feel lethargic, which is not ideal if you have a day of work ahead of you. While we’re spending all of our time at home during lockdown, it’s better to keep up with a normal day-to-day routine that your body’s already used to – not as a form of punishment, but to keep the days from blending into one so much!
2. Break up your work time and chill time
If you find yourself working in front of the tele all day and then relaxing in front of the tele all night, break it up with an activity of some kind to differentiate the time between working and chilling. Whether it’s doing a quick 20-minute exercise, cooking dinner, or having a shower and getting changed into your cosies, do something in the time you’d usually be commuting to trick your brain a little.
3. Dedicate a space for working
Working from home sounds like every office workers dream. Chilling in your PJs all day, eating a whole packet of biscuits without your colleagues judging you – what more could you want? But it’s actually a lot more complex than that. It’s super important for your sanity to separate your workspace from the rest of your home, and dedicate an area that you can focus on work only, without blurring the lines.
4. Utilise your daily exercise allowance
It’s good to get some fresh air, but of course, make sure it abides by the government’s lockdown rules. To break up your day, make sure you utilise your time outdoors well, whether it’s a run locally to clear your mind a little bit, or some yoga in your back garden – it’ll probably make you feel a little like you’ve done something that day.
5. Take your time
Don’t be so hard on yourself and just take your time with it all. While we’re at home, we don’t need to rush anything – whether it’s dinner (or ‘tea’ as we’d say in Manchester), bath time or breakfast. Make the most of the time we have and learn that recipe for the meal you want to try, or even try and recreate your favourite takeaways for a little treat. We’ve got all the time in the world while we wait for the lockdown rules to be lifted.
6. Don’t “let yourself go”
It can be really easy to let yourself go while couped up at home, but for your own sanity, don’t do it! Take care of yourself – groom your beard, put a bit of makeup on, actually shower – it does wonders for making you feel like you kind of have your life together. It’s one of the easiest ways to implement some sort of routine in your life while our normal day-to-day is on hold, and might even make you feel good.
7. Take time to process things
Ok, so let’s get real. This situation isn’t easy for anyone. We’re treading unfamiliar ground right now, and it’s quite strange being confined to our homes with no end date. Take some time to process it all, try the Headspace app if you’re feeling a little anxious and generally allow yourself some time for a bit of TLC. Whether it’s a hot bubble bath with a bev or just putting your feet up in front of your favourite film, award yourself that ‘me’ time that we all definitely need right now.
8. Plan things to look forward to
Is there a live pub quiz taking place? Or do you fancy differentiating the weekend from the week? Pencil in a takeaway night on a Friday and get some beers in your weekly shop to give yourself something to look forward to. Just because we’re not going anywhere any time soon doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have things to be excited about, we need it now more than ever!
9. Retain your working routine
Would you usually have lunch at noon on the dot? Make sure you mirror your usual work routines while at home, to retain even a pinch of normality. Whether it’s replicating your beloved Tesco meal deal (or actually getting it in your weekly shop), or keeping your diary structured as it normally would be, it all helps towards keeping a routine throughout the day.
10. Think of the positives
While there’s a lot going on in the outside world (which it’s totally ok to worry about), think of the positives around your time in lockdown. Do you have more time to pursue your hobbies or dreams? Did you finally get to watch The Queen’s Gambit? Or are you just spending more quality time with your loved ones that you wouldn’t have gotten otherwise? This time in lockdown could be a blessing in disguise if you think of it differently.