(Still)Bored in the house, and (still) in the house bored? 4 months have gone by since the stay-at-home orders had been put in place and we are still at home. Yes, I know some places are entering various phases of their ‘back-to-normal’ plans, but things are still anything but normal. What many were thinking and hoping would have been at the most 1-1.5 months of quarantine has quickly turned into an entire summer. A couple months back I posted about some ways to handle this new way of living and the stresses that come with it. (Click here for a refresher). The advice there still holds true now that we are 4 months (and counting) into quarantine living. Overall the advice given there, if you don’t want to go read it, was be kind to yourself and choose vegetables, fruits, and whole foods before you reach for the processed options available to you. Moving away from the nutritional side of wellness and toward the physical/fitness side this post will give you some options to help create some semblance of structure during these very unsure times. So, without any further introduction here is my list of advice:
- Create a schedule for yourself- This doesn’t have to be the same thing every day, but during the ‘work week’ you should create some type of schedule that would reflect what it would look like for you if you weren’t WFH. Wake up at the same time every day, create a ‘morning commute’ whether that is having breakfast or having a cup of coffee while reading a book/magazine/the news/etc., clock-in for the work day, take a lunch break away from your work area, take walks around your home 5 minutes every hour, and have a hard quitting time where all work related things get put away for the day.
- Set aside at least 30 minutes of some type of movement- This can be a walk/jog around your neighborhood, YouTube a yoga session, break out the dumbbells/kettlebells, stretching, body-weight circuits, etc. Just do something that gets the blood flowing through the body and gets you up from your desk/workstation.
- Pick up a new hobby or start reading- Do something that stimulates your mind beyond your work; that isn’t finding a new show to watch on Netflix or Hulu. You can even get into a new podcast.
- Check up on your friends and family- Group FaceTime, texts, zooms, whatever it is just make sure the people you care about are doing alright. If you are stressed out by all of this or feel off, there is a very good chance you aren’t the only one.
- Get dressed- I noticed personally when I stopped laying around in what I wore to bed the night before I felt a little better. Even if I did change from one oversized t-shirt & sweatpants combo to another one, it made me feel like I had started a new day. You can also take this further and place a to-go order from your favorite local restaurant (#SupportLocalBusinesses) and put on something other than sweatpants, maybe even do your hair/makeup, and go have a socially distanced picnic.
Pretty much what I am saying is, eat well, move your body, and do something for your mind. We are creatures of habit and love structure, but we also don’t like feeling like we are in a rut or living the same day over and over again. So, do something that makes each day a little different from the rest and don’t forget to still treat yourself once in a while. Nutritional, physical and mental self-care are very important to your overall wellness.
[Thought this was funny and fitting for the post]
I am a super nerd, so I love learning. Whether it is through formal education, conversations with friends, picking up a new hobby, or enrolling in an online course. I have found that I have learned the most from talking to my friends about different topics, because it has allowed me to approach these topics with a new perspective. It is one thing to have knowledge, it is another to admit when you are wrong or less versed in an area than another person. Some of the smartest people I know are the most willing to admit when they are unsure about something and offer their best answer while leaving their minds open to further explanation and a differing perspective. The best way to continue learning is to surround yourself with people who see all of the amazing things you have to offer, and then push you to maximize your potential. It is always great to surround yourself with like-minded people, in that you all have some shared interest and the same desire to maximize your potentials. Surrounding yourself with like-minded people doesn’t mean to only interact with people who have the exact same opinions and thoughts as you do. Doing that is how you get stuck and never truly reach your full potential because you don’t have people who challenge you. Some of my best conversations have happened with friends and family who share the same fundamental view on life but approach this view in different ways because they challenge me to think a little differently on various topics and I love that from them. I am beyond grateful to have the people I do in my life because they support me whole-heartedly while still challenging me to grow each day and to never settle. They are also the people that inspire me to put my whole self into learning new things because I want to show them that I appreciate their support and by being my best I hope to show them they can also be their best.
With that said it is never too late to learn something new. You can in fact teach an old dog new tricks. It may not be picked up as quickly, but you will nonetheless learn something new. There have been studies that also show learning something new throughout your lifetime will help slow cognitive aging and help exercise your brain. Just like it is important to exercise your skeletal muscles and your heart muscle (which comes with skeletal muscle exercise), you need to exercise your muscle in your skull.
So, what I would like you to take away from this post:
- It is never too late to learn something new.
- Exercising your brain through continued learning is just as important as exercising the body.
- Knowledge is the greatest tool you can have.
- It is good to admit when you are wrong and be willing to listen to/ see something from a different perspective.
Get out there and pick up a new hobby, learn that language you’ve said you’ve been wanting to learn, join that group class that you have been interested in, and have deeper, more challenging conversations with your friends and family. You will be surprised what you learn about the people around you and about yourself.
Some of you may have seen my short post from about a month ago about COVID-19 and things it taught me. When I posted that social distancing and school closures had just occurred, so it was pretty early on in this crazy “new normal”. Now fast forward from that post to today, almost an entire month has passed, and I still stand by the things I said in that post, but I now have a little more to say. I will repost below what I said in my previous post as a refresher for y’all and for those that didn’t see my post to get a chance to see what I had to say.
- I don’t appreciate the beautiful place I live nearly enough. Charleston is an amazing place to live and has some pretty great options to be outside and I don’t take advantage of that nearly enough.
- Supporting local businesses is so important. I love my coffee shops and local restaurants but didn’t even think how something like this would affect their livelihood.
- While I joke that I live most of my life like I’m in quarantine I’ve realized that a lot of the things I enjoy doing involves me being around other people. (going to the gym, sitting by my pool, sitting at a coffee shop, laying at the beach, etc)
- People can be selfish, and the internet/social media can be a toxic place, but I’ve seen a lot of people offering to help others in various ways which is an awesome thing to see. Overall things are getting pretty crazy, but it is nice to see people are trying to help one another through this, showing that there is still good out there.
- Now that we are quickly approaching a month of living our lives in isolation and quarantine, with an end not in sight I have begun to think about how I intend to live once life goes back to normal. This thought actually stems from a conversation some of my friends and I had after a very thought-provoking question was posed. Individually we all had little things we brought up about how life was going and what we have been doing and are looking forward to when life returns to normal, but there was common theme we all seemed to share. We all said we want to be present in the moment when we are with friends and enjoy the little things more now that we have seen what life looks like without them. Just going out to dinner or sitting at the beach or in a coffee shop are things we missed being able to do and never realized how much we took for granted the ability to do that.
- Personally, I am going to work on making plans with friends more often and not saying no to going out and being with people as often as I did before COVID hit. I am doing my best to stay sane through exercise, getting some fresh air, and being in virtual contact with friends and family and these are things I want to carry over into my life when the quarantine lifts.
- I also found this has been a great time to do some personal reflection and figure out life (as best as I can because do you really ever truly get it all perfectly figured out). I’ve been doing some future planning, lots of reading, and some life hacking (basically trying to implement concepts from books I have been reading to live out my best life/self).
Yes, living life in quarantine has been and is still pretty wild/strange/annoying, but there have been some positive take-aways, and I am sure more to come being the end doesn’t seem to be insight. I would just love to see a continued sense of community and willingness to lend a helping hand once life goes back to normal and people become “too busy” with their own lives to concern themselves with everyone else’s. Stay safe everyone!
As usual I was scrolling through Pinterest and came across this image below.
This couldn’t have popped into my life at a better time. In 4 days my senior year of college will start as it is the first day of preseason of my last season of soccer ever. So that alone is a pretty big change that I have to prepare myself to embrace. Along with that change looming over my head I got dinner with my teammates that graduated this May and they are all doing amazing things with their new adult lives. It was so awesome to look around the table and hear all the new changes and adventures they had going on in their lives. They all were able to share all these great stories because they all ‘turned the page’.
So I am excited for this chapter of my life to begin in 4 days, but at the same time I am not ready to turn that page. I know that once that page is turned this chapter is going to fly by and a new chapter will be ready to go. All I know is that I am going to do everything I can to make this chapter a memorable, fun, and exciting one and not rush through it, even when some parts may not be my favorites or that fun.
Once again, Pinterest, you seem to know what is going on in my life and always know the perfect thing to say. For that I thank you, and will fearlessly enter each new chapter that lies ahead.