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Flashback to 2019 - the time before COVID changed our lives, almost instantly, without a warning, for a seemingly endless period. The world was going about its routine life. People went to offices. Children to school or hobby classes thereafter. Homes served more like hotels where everyone would return only to hit the bed at night.
Fair enough. Where was the time to stay home? Weekdays were super busy and weekends were much looked forward to for outings - a much-needed welcome break from the bustling monotony of the whole week.
Fast forward to 2020 - the year that’s going to be etched in our memory for a long, long time to come. For, it’s impacted the lives of all, directly or indirectly. The home where we hardly had time to spend has become our permanent address - residential and office both. We can be found there, 24/7.
For working people, home is the new office. For children, balcony/adjoining garden is the new playground. And for wives/moms, the once-empty house that seemed blissful upon the exit of kids to school and men to work has now turned into one big chaos.
Of course, a few months of having already experienced “the lockdown effect”, most of us are slowly but surely accepting this as the “new normal”.
We have accepted the new reality of our everyday life, perhaps even prepared ourselves mentally to live through it all for at least a year to come. But what about the flood of emotions we’re experiencing at the moment?
Stressed, with work overload. Anxious, about the near future. Disconnected, with family and friends. Depressed, confined within the four walls since months. Would it be right to accept these feelings too as “the new normal?”
Absolutely not! For, the day we start accepting these emotions as part of our everyday lockdown life, it’d only add to our problems, not to mention, perturb our sanity. One thing’s for sure. Our home is our haven, now and even in the near future. The only place we can trust the safety of ourselves and that of our kids. So we have to figure out a way to stay happy (along with safe) indoors.
It’s not difficult. A few simple tricks can help. Let’s take a look.
How To Stay Happy And Enjoy At Home During Lockdown?
1. Try and ensure everyone gets their ‘me time’; it’s important
Women are stressed because they suddenly have lots to do the whole day. Kids’ online home schooling (which most of us have slowly gotten used to) is only an added chore to an already long list. We’ve somewhere lost out on our 2-3 hours of ‘me time’ that we used to so fondly enjoy during the first half of the day.
Try and get back to your quality time, at least for an hour daily. Whether it’s in the afternoons (which are relatively freer) or any other time in the day you deem comfortable; make sure you spend it only for and on yourself - self-care and self-rejuvenation. Pamper yourself with a head massage or pedicure. Read a book, listen to music, indulge in gardening, whatever. It’d help you refresh, recharge and take on the rest of the day in a new avatar. Try it.
Other members of your family too deserve their share of ‘me time’, seriously! Your husband and your kids are equally stressed with their work and classes, and a few minutes in the day spent to their liking would help relax them. Sometimes staying together all-day-long is reason enough to argue and fight. Allow them their quiet time and space. The result: everyone’s less stressed, more happy and loving towards each other.
2. Tidy up; you’ll love your house
When everyone’s home all day, especially if you have small kids, the house is going to be one big mess, undoubtedly. You don’t have to spend the whole day cleaning up because that’s only going to add to your stress. Keep aside half an hour everyday before you retire for the night to tidy up the place. Involve your kids in keeping away their toys to the proper places.
Make it a fun everyday activity, rather discipline, to be followed in the house each single night. Everyone loves waking up to a clean and tidy house every morning. It brings considerable difference to the way you feel when you wake up.
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3. Keep an exercise routine
No gyms/playgrounds to use anymore but you can still keep your fitness routine intact. Remember, a fitter body is the first step to a healthy and happy mind. Take a brisk walk on your terrace or in the garden. You can even do the same in your neighborhood/locality (taking necessary precautions).
Or, you can even follow an exercise regimen in your house. Whether it’s body stretches or yoga practice, whatever best suits you, definitely keep 30 minutes of your morning to take care of your health. It’s even more important now than ever to keep your immunity strong and your mind sane in the current circumstances.
4. Enjoy meals together
Husband’s working from home. Kids are attending online classes. But keep a set time to enjoy a healthy and happy meal together, preferably everyday or as regular as you can.
You’d anyway be cooking at home now in these times. Try and plan something special maybe Friday evenings or on weekends, just like you would earlier, to celebrate the weekend. Cook the meal that everyone loves and relive those happy times together.
5. Stay connected but limit time on social media
Sometimes spending too much time reading the news, especially related to Corona hits, can be quite distressing. Add to that the time spent on casual browsing on social media, which can also be too exhaustive. It’s important to stay connected with family and friends at this time but balance it out so that it doesn’t get overwhelming.
Try and spend more time on other things that you can enjoy together as a family. Watch a movie, for example. It would also help you connect with your friends better when you’re happy and less stressed.
Before You Go
Came across a quote that so rightly puts the essence of being home in these times:
“Home is not a place…it’s a feeling."
It’s how you feel when you’re home that matters the most. After all, we are going to be caught up in this situation for a little while longer. Yet, there’s one thing to feel happy and grateful for. Staying at home has given us a chance to actually spend time with family and loved ones, every minute of our lives. It has made us get back to our long-forgotten interests - cooking at home or taking a walk with our spouse. Why not feel positive and happy so that you can create equally happy and beautiful memories for the future?
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