10 Self-Care Tips for Shelter-in-Place

1. Wash Your Hands

No surprises here. After watching all the guidelines on how to get all the parts of my hands clean, I do each motion 4 times in each direction. While quoting Hamlet’s “out, out, damn spot” might be more fun, I found that actually focusing on good handwashing kept me from mindlessly washing my hands and missing some of the CDC’s recommended motions.

2. Keep Alcohol Wipes by the Door

If you have to go out for groceries, you probably take your phone with you. We keep a box of alcohol wipes, like the ones used in the doctor’s office for giving shots, next to the door and use one on our phones once we get home. Don’t forget to take your phone out of the case and wipe down the fronts and backs of both the phone and the case.

3. Take Off Your Pajamas

I wear exercise clothes most of the day (until I actually get a chance to workout), then I shower and put on an actual outfit. Wearing something other than pajamas helps me feel dressed and ready to take on my day. Remember that if you’re in video conferences, you need to get dressed as if for (at least) a casual office workday.

4. Exercise

Between allergies and a disinclination toward insects, I’m not the sort to go outside for a run or a walk. Instead, I’ve been doing a lot of cardio on YouTube and Amazon Prime. Zumba engages my mind as well as my body. I like yoga too, but a wrist injury is keeping me off the mat. Getting a good sweat on helps ensure I keep moving when it’s so easy to sit around the house all day.

5. Schedule Regular Breaks

The Pomodoro Method is great for keeping me on task. A five-minute break to refill my water cup, swap a load of laundry, or review the kids’ latest assignments (and get them yet another snack) also gets me moving out of my chair. For my husband, who’s stuck on Zoom calls all day, having a 30-minute slot scheduled means that he actually gets to eat lunch.

6. Don’t Abandon Healthy Habits

While the temptation to snack all day or eat junk food is greater now that others are around all the time to encourage poor choices, try to stick to your regular habits as much as possible. I keep a large cup of water next to my desk all day and make sure to refill it at least once. I also stick to my regular meal times and limit snacking to once a day.

7. Spend 15 Minutes Tidying

Seeing toys strewn about, unmade beds, or extra paperwork sitting around, especially now that I can’t go anywhere to escape seeing it all, spins me up. With everyone at home all the time, the space also gets dirtier faster than usual. Starting a 15-minute timer or a short podcast can give me just the right amount of time to make a serious improvement to the family living space. I try to clear the sink every night so that I come down to a clean kitchen in the morning.

8. Avoid the News

I limit myself to brief updates from a single news source once a day. Listening to the repeated doom and gloom brings me down, especially when all I can do to help is stay inside. I’m also avoiding social media “news” posts since it’s so easy for people to spread misinformation.

9. Do something for Fun

A card game, a board game, a puzzle, a leisure book, an old favorite movie, an old hobby…do something to get out of your rut. While I don’t recommend sitting at a screen all day, YouTube can teach you just about anything, from crochet to drawing to piano.

10. Reconnect with People

If you can meet up virtually with friends or family, reconnecting with them may be relaxing. If not, or if you’re getting a little too much family time, try playing mental bingo every time someone does that annoying thing they always do.

Post your funny family moments in the comments.

A huge thank you to all of our essential workers, from healthcare, to food services, to delivery, and all the rest. We at Atlanta Custom Tailors appreciate all that you do. Stay safe!

1 thought on “10 Self-Care Tips for Shelter-in-Place”

  1. My 4-year-old announced very loudly that he needed to go to the bathroom…in front of the entire leadership team during my Zoom call.

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