You’re probably self-isolating yourself right now. With all that’s happening around the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic instability and the financial crisis as a result of it, you must be feeling anxious and uncertain.
Self-isolation is just one of the many lifestyle changes we’re all going through right now one way or another. But if you just give in to the negative thoughts and unproductive and unhealthy behaviors, you can end up being depressed.
Our usual daily routine has been taken away from us, we’re protecting ourselves from a virus, and we’re also staying at home more than ever. That can lead to many problems, including a mental health crisis around the world.
Luckily, instead of letting things happen to you, you can take responsibility of your mental health and look after yourself in these uncertain and scary times.
Here are some things I’m doing to stay sane and positive during self-isolation:
How to Deal with Self-Isolation
I ditched the news.
That was one of the first things I did when I decided to take control of my life again, after most of the countries in the world were on lockdown.
The thing is, people will turn on the tv, or click that video, or read that article, or share that post, mostly if it has bad and shocking news. So that’s what the media is bringing to us, as it’s what gets attention and sells.
We mostly hear the scary things on the news and even if we’re quite resilient and realize both the pros and cons of the situation, we get anxious and stressed.
For every minute spent reading or watching news on the topic, you must then invest the same amount of time in realistic or positive self-talk, acceptance, letting go of fear, etc. But we don’t really do that. So the easiest solution to this is to avoid the thing causing anxiety in the first place – the news.
I still know about the measures in my country and in most other countries in the world as well as the numbers of sick and dead people. That’s enough.
I also hear about certain updates (vaccine trials, new research, new symptoms of the virus, new country that was hit by coronavirus, or else) from someone around me.
Information travels fast. But I don’t go search for it myself anymore, as most of it is simply not necessary.
If it doesn’t bother you to watch the news every day and hear about the horrible stories of people and predictions of how long this can continue, you’re good. But most of us, simply shouldn’t engage their brain in this, for the sake of our mental health (especially during self-isolation).
I devoted more time for personal growth.
I haven’t really been listening to podcasts a lot in the past years, but now I’m an even bigger fan of them than ever.
It’s a great way to multitask (listen to a podcast while doing something at home) and I truly enjoy my daily walks when I listen to an amazing episode of someone I consider my mentor.
Of course, it’s all about the content you choose. While I love learning more about online business and hearing interviews with other bloggers, I’m now more interested than ever in life coaching. Not to become one, but to coach myself. And luckily, I found the right person to inspire me in these times.
I was mostly listing to life coaches like Natalie Bacon (who was once a corporate girl, then a full-time finance blogger, and now runs a big business and is a life coach). However, I now listen to Brooke Castillo who is Natalie’s life coach and her mentor.
She runs The Life Coach School, a multimillion business, and went from coaching clients herself to preparing people to become certified life coaches.
The free advice she shares on her podcast is truly amazing. I’m learning some fantastic concepts such as The Model – how circumstances trigger thoughts, thoughts cause feelings, feelings cause actions, and actions cause results.
It’s a basic model but in it, is every solution to a problem we’ve ever had.
She also talks about toxic relationships, self-coaching, changing our beliefs (as we can believe absolutely anything we decide to), creating our future from our future, etc.
Simply listening to one episode is enough for me to get motivated for the day, to realize something I’ve been struggling with and see how it was a result of having a negative belief.
Now is the time for personal growth and we can all use it to deal with self-isolation.
Just find that one area of your life you need help with, and invest time every day to improve it. Learn all you can about it from blogs on the topic, read a book, listen to a podcast, find a mentor in that industry whose advice you’re going to follow, try life coaching, or get free therapy online.
This way we can come out of social isolation better than ever.
Now is not the right time to be hard on yourself. If you haven’t started working out but planned to, if you eat more than usual, if you are behind on some projects, if it looks like others are productive at home but you aren’t – it’s okay.
Times are different and your main job is to maintain your well-being and feel at ease. That might mean sleeping in, not getting things done, eating what you want, or being on your phone way too much.
Don’t resist it. That’s not the right way to make a change. Instead, let it be and focus on building other small habits in your daily routine that will be the foundation of bigger things.
For example, if you practice acceptance at all times and don’t overthink, you can have a good relationship with anyone you’re living with or staying in touch with.
If you still go to bed at a normal hour even if it means not falling asleep any time soon, you might wake up early enough the next day.
If you just go for a walk once a day, you might wanna try jogging next month.
Don’t be hard on yourself. Self-isolation, together with taking care of your physical health and following so many rules, is enough to keep you disciplined. For the rest, find things you enjoy and do more of them.