With the COVID-19 pandemic has come the need for millions of Americans to stay at home, self-isolate, and practice social distancing. The anxiety and stress that comes with this, for most people, even if they’re low-risk for coronavirus or its complications, is making these times feel uncertain.
If your job was affected by COVID-19 you may be currently unemployed, or maybe you’re working from home for the first time. It can be a major disruption to suddenly be alone, or constantly around roommates or family members all. the. time. If you’re an extrovert who’s usually a busy social butterfly, or an introvert who isn’t used to always being around your housemates whose schedules and energies don’t match yours, staying at home with no end in sight can be mentally and physically taxing.
It’s so important to find ways to have fun, relax, and unwind. If you have your essentials covered, allow room in your budget for a few healthy indulgences!
- Plan That Vacation – By now you know that most of the travel industry has closed. But what better time than now to think about your next vacay? Studies have shown that when people have a vacation to look forward to, they feel happier about life. Spend some time thinking about where you’d like to go when all of this is over. Research your options. Think about cost. Maybe even put down a refundable deposit! See yourself in a happier future.
- Upgrade Your Internet or Your Phone – Don’t settle for crappy internet service. How can you, when you need to binge-watch Netflix, stay in touch with family and friends, order food, and make excuses about why you can’t be on that work Zoom call? All at the same time. Call your provider and see if you can upgrade. Many upgrades can now be handled over the phone and don’t even require a tech. New phone shopping is also something that can be done from home, and a lot of providers are offering massive upgrade deals and rebates right now. If you have a family, now might be a good time to upgrade your data plan, too. Many providers let you compare and change plans online, which will be faster than trying to get things done over the phone right now!
- Have a Spa Day at Home – I know pampering always helps me cope with stress! Salons and spas might be closed but you can still enjoy self-care without leaving home. Some ways you can pamper yourself at home are: getting some wine and fancy chocolates; experimenting with a new hair color or style; take a spa-style bath complete with candles; try new makeup or skincare treatments.
- Learn Something New – Many gyms and fitness studios are offering classes for a free trial or a reduced rate. Local dance and music teachers are teaching lessons online. You can use this time to learn a new language or learn new cooking skills! It’s so good for your mental health to set new goals. It can also be a good time to catch up on work-related education or skills training. If you own your own business, it’s a great time to update your website and social media presence.
- Support Your Favorite Artists and Musicians – Have friends who are performing online due to canceled gigs? Donate, buy t-shirts. With museums and theaters closed, now is a wonderful time to re-up your membership, or buy gift certificates. Even though we can’t show up to support the arts in person right now, we can still support art and culture.
Self-Care Isn’t Selfish
These 5 items can help you take good care of yourself (and others, by extension) while you stay at home. These things won’t break the bank, and they can provide some relief during this exhausting and stressful time. At an uncertain time, you can still indulge a bit. Remember: experiences often make us happier than things. Invest in quality time however you can and build happy memories.