Home Alone: 9 Tips To Get Through Self-Isolation If You Live On Your Own
Techniques for those who live alone and practice social distancing amid COVID-19 pandemic.
Even if you are introverted, not talking to anyone face to face for a month or more is really tough. Built to be social beings, we need other people around us to feel happy. That's true: sometimes even the loved ones can drive us crazy but at the end of the day, no man is an island.
During coronavirus pandemic, most of us are committed to staying home. Being by yourself all the time can be a real challenge, especially if you're not used to it. Hily piled up the best tips from psychologists on how to feel balanced and peaceful while going through self-isolation alone.
According to clinical psychologist Dr. Tony Ortega, long social distancing can be very useful.
" I think the greatest benefit in long social distancing, if done correctly, is being wildly okay with who you are. The main issue I find in my practice is that clients, to some degree or another, struggle with a sense of self as well as with being single.
A prolonged period of solitude can force you to really be okay with you and mold you into being the person you want to be with," he says.
Remind Yourself Today Is Not Forever
Tell this to yourself every time you feel frustrated. After all, it's true. Remembering that this is just a temporary living situation will ease anxiety and loneliness, say Dr. Ortega.
Turn Crisis Into Opportunity
"What opportunity is here for me?" and "Is there something I can learn or create in light of this situation?" are the two questions you should ask yourself. According to therapist Tanya Fruehauf, they can help to re-frame your thoughts and change your perception of the situation.
Found ways to benefit from the situation? Great. Now make a list of activities. Clinical marriage and family therapist Afton Strate recommends exploring how you would like to spend time while at home. Go on a virtual museum tour or visit an online exhibition, find a new hobby or reorganize your wardrobe. For more ideas, read Hily's previous article.
Let Nature In
Another great tip from Afton Strate is to find ways to communicate with nature.
"Open your window blinds or windows for some sunlight. When possible, while maintaining recommended social distancing guidelines, get outside and spend some time in nature. Buy some flowers for yourself, plant flowers outdoors, fill your birdfeeder or take your dog for a walk."
Don't Engage In Emotional Distancing
While practicing social distancing, you don't have to disconnect emotionally, says mental health speaker and clinician Lauren Cook. Share your feelings with your loved ones. Don't be afraid to reach out. Chances are, during this time they'd be more than happy to talk to you more often.
Help Your Community
According to Afton Strate, helping your community can also strengthen the feeling of being connected. You can use your talents or even develop some new skills to give back to your community. For instance, learn to sew masks, call your neighbors to see if they need any help, donate money to those in need or support someone who needs extra encouragement.
"Connect with your larger community to lift your spirits is healthy and can bring peace and comfort which is much needed when our sense of safety is compromised", says Afton.
Make your home the place where you feel as comfortable as possible. Anything you can implement to induce a sense of peace and comfort will be helpful as you adapt, says Lauren Cook. Light aroma candles, wear fuzzy socks or turn on your favorite music.
Follow A Self-Care Routine
A proper self-care routine can also improve your comfort level. Prioritize rest, staying hydrated, and eating well to maintain a healthy immune system response in general, recommends Afton Strate.
"While your routine has likely changed drastically, figure out what is essential for you to hold some sense of normalcy. For example, showering, get dressed for the day (even if that means comfortable clothes), brushing your teeth, having a bedtime, enjoying a morning cup of coffee."
Keep A Journal
There are lots of articles on the Internet explaining how journaling can improve your life. It's a smart thing to do in times of self-distancing even if it seems you have nothing to write about.
"Grab a notebook and document your journey of being all alone in your apartment. Who knows? It may be the modern day version of Robinson Crusoe.
All kidding aside, journaling provides an amazing outlet to release all of your inner feelings and frustrations in a safe environment. This leads to a greater ability to see things more objectively," says Dr. Tony Ortega.
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