How to stay sane when in lockdown

With us now all being told that we need to be in lockdown the thought of spending potentially weeks inside may seem like a dream come true. For others, the idea of being cut off from the outside world, alone, or with only a few close family members, will fill them with dread.

When people are stuck indoors for long periods of time, they can report getting “cabin fever” or feel like they are going “stir crazy.” Observations from actual or simulated space missions or people living in confined spaces, such as those spending a winter on polar stations, also suggest that some people may find self-isolating more difficult than others. This is going to be true with some reports saying the lockdown in parts of Australia, United States, Europe and the UK could be 6 months or even longer. However, there are some simple measures that you can take to help you adapt when in lockdown.

You can also see our blog about how you can still read, eat and explore across the world.

1. Structure your day

For some people, lockdown might still lead to some mild mental health issues. We know from people who have spent a winter in a polar research station that longer-term isolation and confinement are linked to psychological problems. One study found that in crews over winter, over 60% reported feeling depressed or anxious; and nearly 50% felt more irritable and had problems with memory, sleeping, and concentrating.

Obviously, coronavirus lockdown won’t be as extreme or as long as for those exposed to an Arctic winter and so the impact on mental wellbeing is likely to be much less extreme. But some people who are self-isolating may have difficulties with sleep (insomnia), feelings of restlessness or sadness, or start to feel demotivated.

We also suggest you work out at least once a day, you can see our suggestion in Exercise & Health, one of our favourite exercises is In Lockdown Resistance Full Body Training set.

To combat these problems, it is important to maintain a structure to your day. Having a set schedule for meal times and a set bedtime can help you to stay on track. Planning out activities and setting goals can also help keep you motivated and stop you from feeling down.


2. Boost your immune system

Research on the effects of loneliness suggests that when people lack social connections they are more likely to suffer from health problems.  For example, older adults who can’t leave their homes due to impaired mobility are more susceptible to illness, such as heart disease. And studies have found that polar research crews can suffer from reductions in their immune system. 

During lockdown, it may be a good idea to try to improve your immune response. Exercise and getting enough vitamins can help here (although contrary to some internet sources, they're not a cure.  Psychologists also believe that listening to upbeat music or watching a movie can also boost your immune function.

We also recommend one of our favourite exercises that uses Resistance Bands for a resistance full body training that ensures your entire body gets the maximum workout.

3. Maintain social contact

An obvious reason why isolated people may feel low or anxious is that they can’t draw on the support of friends and families to help them deal with the difficult situation and share their worries and concerns. Studies also suggest that without such social support, people may turn to less positive coping strategies, such as drinking more alcohol.

So during self-isolation, you should stay in contact with your social network. This can be as simple as phoning a friend for a chat, sending someone an email, or joining in with a discussion via social media. Reaching out to someone has been shown to be better for your mental health than having a glass or two of wine in a bid to block out your worries.


4. Avoid conflict

In some cases, people will be self-isolating with a small group of people, whether family or friends. This may limit loneliness but could present other challenges, namely the possibility of arguments. Even those we love dearly can get on our nerves when we’re stuck inside with them for long enough.

Cosmonaut Valentine Lebedev, who spent 211 days onboard the space station Mir, reported that around 30% of his time in space was spent dealing with crew confilcts. Increases in group tensions have also been seen in polar research stations. So it’s a good idea to try to reduce interpersonal conflicts. 

Another strategy to reduce conflict is to have some time away from each other. If you start to feel that a situation is likely to escalate, it is a good idea to take at least a 15-minute timeout. Sit in separate rooms and let everyone calm down. Normally after 15 minutes, the reason for the argument does not seem as important.

5. Keep Learning 

By ensuring that you are keeping your mind sharp and engaged you will make ssure that you are continuing to focus and develop new skills. We recommend a number of really good E-Learning courses that will help you learn a new skill, language or start your own business.

Finally, it is important to remember that if you feel self-isolation is having a very negative impact on your mental health, you should seek professional advice.

Let us know if you have any questions and need help, remember when in Lockdown we are all in this together.

We hope you enjoyed this article. We also suggest you visit FreedominHours they have heaps of great resources and articles about how you can make money and achieve financial success, in particular their video about Simple Steps to Financial Freedom is really good.

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1 comment

  • Some really good tips and ideas here. I have found it really hard being in lockdown being so active myself. Structuring my day and keeping myself really healthy has helped heaps!

    Dave S

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