The new normal…
We’re now at the end of week six in quarantine aka our new normal. And it’s saved to say it’s taking it toll on most people. Everybody is coping with the situation differently and I’m no exception. Even though I’m an introvert and homebody by heart. Having an at-home husband takes some adjustments. And not seeing your friends and family can be really tough but I feel like I’m coping with it just fine.
Some adjustments I made to my weeks and everyday life that really help me to stay calm and sane. And which I hope can help you too to adapt to the new normal. We are in this together, so share your tips and little changes in the comments.
As a key worker, I still can go to work every day. I even have to work more days/hours. And I’m so thankful for that. Even though I love being at home and enjoy my own company a lot, I’m really bad at staying home all the time. And I’m a hundred per cent sure my mental health would be much worse if I had to stay home every day. In case you wondered, I’m a social worker in a children’s home. So it’s normal to work weekends and 24/hours shifts for me (therefore I sometimes have a day off in the middle of the week). But at the moment it’s a lot sometimes. As the kids are pretty stressed and aren’t sure how to behave in those strange times (but who does really?!)
As I said, I’m at work a lot at the moment. J, my husband, is the total opposite. He works from home (home office) until at least June. So it’s strange to have him home all the time. I’m not complaining. It just took a little time to acclimate to him being in his home office every day. Normally, when I’m home alone on a Wednesday morning (for example) I would blast Vampire Weekend, dance around without jeans and sing along. Hoover the whole flat. Or watch The Office for the 100th time. That is kind of tricky when somebody’s home on a Zoom call trying to work. So now I stick to the more quiet hobbies such as reading (follow along on Good Reads), writing letters or blogging. Which is lovely. And whenever I feel the need for a crazy dance session I do it at work (with my pants on!).
Family and friends
My best friend and I have this thing where we see each other at least once every month (She has a kid and I’m kind of a workaholic, and we don’t live that close to one another. So sometimes it’s just every 4 weeks we see each other and can spend time together). And now I haven’t seen her in person for approximately 8 weeks and I miss her so so much! The last time we face timed she showed me that her baby boy can walk already. I mean, OMG. The last time I saw him in person he just started to crawl. What I’m trying to say. It’s hard. And definitely the hardest part about the whole quarantine for me. So face time sessions and zoom calls are an almost daily thing now.
Something else I started doing more often now is writing letters and postcards. Not only to my pen pals but also to my family and friends. And it’s something I hope I’ll keep doing even though we’re (hopefully soon) allowed to be close in-person to our loved ones again.
The glow-up pressure
I have been there. And it’s a real thing. But this is a difficult and uncertain time. And you don’t need to come out of it 5kg lighter, with clear skin and an online degree from Yale! You really don’t! If you do, well done! Congratulations! Be proud of yourself! But as long as you come out of it at the end, well done! Congratulations! Be proud of yourself!
We all too often feel like we need to achieve and do what others do. But maybe you should take it slow right now. Practice some self-care. Stay in bed all day, or all week (who cares really?!) Eat all your Easter chocolates. Binge The Office until 3 am. Whatever makes you feel good! This is something I need to remind myself of every now and again (because, workaholic and the need to do stuff).
Finding a new normal routine
With all that being said, let’s get into some more things that help me to stay motivated and that I edited into my daily routine.
1: I get up the same time I always do! This is partly because I’m a true morning person and because I have to go to work most days. But also because it helps me to feel productive.
2: First thing in the morning (besides making coffee) is tidying up the flat. I make the bed, hoover (when J isn’t in the phone), do laundry or unload the dishwasher. It’s such small tasks that give me the feeling I have my life under control.
3: I get ready every day! If it’s past 10 am I’m ready in normal cloth with my hair done (whatever that means) and my face fresh. Being dressed properly and styled is something else that gives me a feeling of control – which gives me peace at mind. So no matter the day, I get ready!
4: J and I go on runs or walks whenever we’re off of work at the same time and the weather is good enough. Getting outside together and moving our bodies feels even more important nowadays.
5: We have a homecooked meal every day (when I’m home) and on the weekends we order in. This isn’t a huge adjustment or change in our routine. But as we’re not able to go out for dinner (or even ice-cream) it’s nice to order in.