The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
The winter is already a hard time for many, but testing positive for COVID-19 makes it ten times worse. Luckily, new restrictions allow for isolation periods to be only five days, but that doesn’t mean that it’s an easy isolation by any means. Recently, after returning to residence, I contracted COVID-19… right before important in-person events that I was looking forward to. When in isolation, I managed to use the fact that I was alone to my advantage and accomplish more than I thought I would be able to. Below are my tips so that if you find yourself in the same unfortunate situation where you’re in isolation, you can make it a positive experience.
Try a new workout
Fitness is something that I have always wished I dedicated more time towards, but lately, I’ve found myself busy and unmotivated, especially since the gyms are once again closed. I tried to incorporate working out into my isolation for not only my physical health but my mental state as well. While I was not up for a sweaty weight workout, I tried a type of workout that was new to me: a dance workout from YouTube. It felt great to move my body, since that wasn’t usually possible in my isolation room and gave me a boost of energy to get started on my homework.
Organize your schedule
While I try to keep track of my assignments and schedule consistently with a planner, sometimes I end up failing to remember to use it. All the free time you have in isolation is a great time to re-organize yourself and prioritize your most important tasks. It is completely understandable if you feel unable to do much more than sleep in isolation, but at least having a game plan of how to catch up on work afterwards can ease your mind.
Do that *thing* you’ve been meaning to do
Everyone has tasks that they’ve been meaning to do but have never gotten around to doing. If it’s possible to complete one of these tasks while confined to the room that you are isolating in, it is a great time to check off that item from your mental to-do list. For me, it was organizing my business portfolio and using it to apply to executive positions before the deadlines. I had been putting it off and assuming it would need to be assigned to a day that I could dedicate to solely that task, but it ended up being extremely painless and quick to complete.
Set (and stick with) a routine
While you might think all you’re able to do while locked in a room for 120 hours straight is sleep and eat and rest, maintaining your pre-isolation routines – or creating a new routine for your predicament – can make a world of difference. I looked forward to my nightly shower and reading in bed throughout the day. I was genuinely content with my situation when that point in the night came when I could shut down my work and get ready for bed. In the morning, I ensured I did my skincare routine, changed out of my pajamas and tried to act like business as usual. The one day I did not complete my usual routine, I found that I was extremely unmotivated and got nothing done.
Pick a hobby back up
As you could imagine, during my isolation I was in dire need of mental stimulation. So, I picked up my love for reading again, which I never found the time to do otherwise. It was great for having something consistent to do when I ran out of videos or movies to watch, or friends to call. Now I’ve brought reading back as a component of my post-isolation life.
Overall, while turning isolation into a productive experience would be fantastic, the most important takeaway that I hope you get from this is to do what’s best for you and your health, while your body is battling an illness. Stay safe everyone.