10 Tips For Coping With Isolation

There is a light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel and this blog will help you to focus on that. It is easy to feel helpless with such a large global issue. Whether you are still able to get out and ride or you are in complete lockdown, here are some ideas to give some structure to your day and more positive thoughts.

1. Create a bucket list & plan things to look forward to

Beth Healey, a Doctor whose  expertise is in extreme physiology and isolation and who spent a year in Antarctica for the European Space Agency, said in a Global News podcast:

It is useful to think that a finish will come and to plan for that. In Antarctica lots of people used to plan for a big trip or holiday that they would have when they got back and I think that was a really useful way to look beyond and plan for what you’re going to do afterwards.

Taking your head out of the here & now & looking to a brighter future is a great way to escape the frustration, anxiety & sadness at our current situation. Getting concrete plans in place for your next holiday or creating a bucket list of things to do within a year are fantastic ways to snap out of the doom & gloom and start getting excited for life after Coronavirus.

Remember, you can book a risk free late Summer 2020 escape now or even book a 2021 trip for a fully refundable €100 deposit!

2. Make a structure for your day

Many of your regular activities, like going to work, may have now been taken away. Maintaining the structure of the working day, even from home, is the first piece of advice regular home workers give to newbies. 

Be disciplined with yourself – 5 hours of solid productivity is way more rewarding than 10 hours of procrastination. Consider switching your phone off or muting social media channels whilst you work. 

Keep your body-clock on track & get up at your normal time, long lazy sleep-ins are not sustainable every day & will force you into a negative cycle of late nights & late mornings. 

3. Keep working

Whether you are a business owner or an employee, your business will need you now more than ever. Working hard in a time of crisis will always pay off when the crisis is over so keep going the extra mile and looking for opportunities.

One gentleman posted on LinkedIn “put on a different set of trousers, the set that you would wear to go out to work”. The mental distinction between work and play is helped by some physical and structural boundaries. Define a place in the house for working and a place for resting. 

Set clear goals for yourself every morning, share them with your colleagues so you are accountable for achieving them!

4. Keep exercising & get fresh air when you can

If you are used to regular exercise and the endorphins this produces, it is important to keep this up during isolation. If you are able to go outside then keep doing so, respecting social distancing. Try and find an outdoor space, even by opening up your windows to feel like you are outside. If you do not have exercise machines then focus on stretching, simple core exercises and yoga. 

For cyclists checkout our blog on indoor training.

5. Try meditation to manage your stress levels

Meditation is a simple tool that anybody can use. All you need is a quiet place on your own.

The Coronavirus is causing widespread panic to the community at large

Says Carrie C. Mead, MS, LCPC, a psychotherapist in Maryland.  The article on “12 Therapist Approved Ways to Manage Coronavirus Anxiety” advises accepting and exploring your anxiety by first centering yourself when anxiety hits. Take a deep breath, focus on the feeling and understand it. Give yourself time alone to think about the feeling.

6. Control time spent reading the news and social media

Overloading on news can cause additional anxiety and stress so it is recommended to limit your intake. Set a time of day, perhaps the morning (to avoid anxious nights) to get up to date with the key facts from reputable sources. Remember that bad news gets more hits so it is important to not dwell too much on the big headline hitters.

Choose your news sources wisely & don’t trust social media trends. It’s also worth signing up to positive news feeds like Positive News & the Good News Network

7. Eat and Drink Well

It is important to maintain a balanced diet and not drink too much alcohol. As well as disrupting your sleep, alcohol can, following some short period of euphoria, make you feel much worse and down. 

You will probably need to reduce your calorie intake and an easy way to do this is to eat less sugar and carbohydrates, focusing more on vitamins and minerals from salads and vegetables. This will also help to boost your immune system.

8. Stay Connected: Call family and friends regularly

It is easy to feel worried about your family, especially if they are in the “at risk” category.

Social media is a great way to stay connected with them. You will want to stay in touch much more regularly during this time which is completely normal and a silver lining for us all! 

9. Make the most of the time

If you’re at home with no work, get those house-projects done, do a deep-clean of everything, start a new gardening project. 

If you’re working, tackle the things on the to do list which always get pushed to the bottom.

10. Support your local businesses

Feel good by doing what you can to help keep your favourite local businesses going! Order a takeaway from your favourite restaurant and bike parts from your favorite local bike shop. They need you more than ever now! If you have the advantage of extra time spend it finding your local alternatives to huge retailers like Amazon & Wiggle, a little extra of your time on google can go a long way for the local suppliers you support & you’ll likely get a more personal service too.

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