A lot of us are traveling back to our hometowns, moving in with our parents, and leaving the city, desperate to get away from The Rona.
I don’t know about you, but when I travel, I get pretty out of it. And not just from physical travel. When I’m in an unfamiliar palace, it’s hard for me to stay in my routine — and believe me, I am a woman of routine. I have my morning routine, my after-work routine, my night routine, even a shower routine. Everything I do is pretty much through a routine. What can I say, I like consistency. Is that weird? Maybe.
Chances are, you probably have some type of routine, too. Your mental health thrives through routines. You probably benefit from having consistency. For the most part, we all crave control, especially in a time where we have even less control over the present and future than ever before.
When your mom says you have to come back home during a pandemic, consider how you can create some normalcy in your new (hopefully temporary) life.
1. Keep your normal morning (and night) routine
When we aren’t going into an office anymore, it’s pretty difficult to get up early and do things like wash your face. It’s even harder when waking up means waking up to lots of animals and your siblings and parents. But keeping a morning routine will help you feel more normal. You know what’s worse than waking up everyone? Everyone in your family already awake and harassing you. That, and waking up to your family harassing you with a dirty face. Give yourself time to mentally (and physically) prepare for the day.
2. Eat how you normally eat
Cook for yourself if that’s what you normally do at home. Don’t stress eat a ton of dairy if your stomach can’t handle it normally. Falling in line with food, the best way to set yourself up to not binge eat is to create a grocery list. Go shopping soon after you get there. Your mom might be doing the cooking, but is she doing the cooking for every meal? What do you normally eat when you’re in your normal routine?
3. Make time for yourself
If life doesn’t feel fulfilling right now, I totally get you. What’s the point in getting up early and keeping a routine? Say it with me… happiness. Use all that extra time to do something nice for yourself. Give yourself a purpose. Read a book. Listen to a podcast. Pick up a new hobby, like running or watercolor painting.
4. Sleep isn’t for the dead, sleep is for you
I know how tempting it is to stay up until the wee hours of the morning scrolling through TikTok. But it leaves us to wake up at noon, and that’s one thing our parents can’t stand. Look, I’m not telling you what to do, but I do know that a normal sleep routine and waking up early can have great impacts on your health.
5. Acknowledge and admit discomfort
The first step to healing is to admit that you have a problem. Okay, this isn’t an intervention. But the mindset still applies. Quarantine sucks. We’re in a pandemic. Nothing is open, and even if it is, we probably shouldn’t go. It’s okay to admit that things suck. Once you admit it, you can control it.
Uprooting your sense of comfort can feel chaotic. Whether you’re staying with friends, going on vacation, or quarantining at your mom’s house, we often lack the total control we typically have. When we acknowledge that a change of scenery can disrupt more than a view, we begin to regain some of that control. What else can you do to feel more at peace when you’re not in the comfort or your own home?