Whether we like it or not, we have to shut ourselves inside our homes while we contain COVID-19. So, instead of scrolling anxiously through Facebook and coming across fake news articles, keep yourself sane during quarantine with this helpful guide.
If you’re self-isolating, working from home, or social distancing, we’re all in this together. As we try to keep ourselves productive and understandably distracted during these trying times, it’s also important to keep yourself healthy–not just physically, but mentally, too. The pandemic is something we need to take seriously and the best way to help as individuals is not to fan the flames of fear.
Though it’s hard not to be anxious while waiting for new updates about the Coronavirus, you may think that checking your news feed may be the best way to keep yourself updated. But with so much discourse happening in social media, it could get overwhelming to read through all of it. That said, please don’t believe everything you read online. It only makes things worse if you cause unnecessary panic. So, as we have all learned by now, verify your sources before reading and hitting that share button.
Listed below are some helpful tips to keep yourself sane during the COVID-19 quarantine period:
Subscribe to Viber Updates & Telegram Updates
Limit what you need to read about the Coronavirus. Stop yourself from stumbling into fake news. One way to do it is to get updates from update groups on Viber or Telegram. DOH PH COVID-19 is a Viber and Telegram group with frequent COVID-19 updates relevant to the Philippines and worldwide. You’ll be able to keep yourself informed without the noise of social media influencing your judgment and only verified information is posted there.
Stop refreshing your newsfeed every other minute
It’s the perfect time to take a break from social media. Now that you have constant updates (see tip #1) on your phone, you don’t have to keep scrolling your timeline for news. Try it gradually if you can’t do it all at once: do it every 15 minutes, make it 30, then an hour, until you’ve gotten the hang of it.
Social distance, not self-isolation
Taking a social media break doesn’t necessarily mean you have to cut off all means of communication with your friends and family. In fact, this quarantine could also be your opportunity to check in on your loved ones. Call your parents, your grandparents, or a friend who lives alone. They’ll surely appreciate you, thinking about them.
Another way to drown out the noise during quarantine is to read a book, the newspaper, or anything that you can physically hold. And no, your phone doesn’t count. Pick up something you’ve never read before, or a book you haven’t for a long time. Broaden your vocabulary, use it in a sentence. Reading can reduce stress and it serves as an ‘escape’ from the real world, all while helping you develop empathy for others.
Focus on the things you can control instead of things you can’t. One thing I find very therapeutic is decluttering my room. It’s time-consuming but totally worth killing time with. Clean and neat surroundings also have profound effects on your mental health. It eases your stress-level, boosts your self-esteem, and when you’re done, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment.
Re-watch your favorite series
You can’t go wrong with something you already know is good. Say, for example, your favorite Netflix show. Whether it’s romcom, dramedy, thriller, or action–there’s something out there that’s surely worth binging again.
Make a playlist
Music can get everyone through these tough times. Research shows the benefits of music therapy for various mental health conditions. It acts as a medium to process emotions, grief, or trauma, but it can also serve as a calming agent for your anxieties. So open your Spotify app, discover new songs, and make a playlist to regulate your mood.
Breathing and meditation exercises
One more stress reduction training is to practice mindful meditation. Mindfulness offers a path to well-being and tools for coping with life’s inevitable hurdles. Mindful meditation involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing, and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present without drifting into concerns about the past or future. Here’s a link to guide you in your meditation.