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6 Tips for the Stay at home Hero

In this time of uncertainty, perhaps you are not feeling like your normal confident self? Here are some tips to help keep you and your loved ones from feeling completely off course.

Make and keep a routine

For most of us, our schedules have changed in one way or another. Some of you may have gone from full throttle work mode to sudden vacation and might be feeling a little lost. Others of you may have gone from an empty house during the day to a full three ring circus. I understand that no one likes a monkey wrench tossed into their daily order, but it's important to bend with the change rather than letting it get you down.

Establishing a new routine is good way to beat stress, and it's something you can rely on while the world is a little topsy-turvy. It may take some time before we see "normal" again, so make sure to set a routine that is viable long term; think a month or two rather than just a week or so.

It is also a good idea to add mini goals to your schedule. When everything is changing quickly, little personal deadlines can help keep us looking ahead and give us something to work toward without being overwhelmed by the bigger picture. Even if I don't know what the world will be like a month from now, I *will* have this section of the yard weeded by then!

Choose a day to make special

Picking a day to single out as special gives family members something to look forward to, especially if stress is running high. Working from home, your days might bleed together and you forget what a weekend is. On the other hand, if you spoil yourself everyday, it isn't special. So pick a day and get creative!

Some things you might try:

  • Home Movie Night! Complete with popcorn and treats.

  • TGIF is a fairly standard one and a good day for getting out the adult beverages. But as always, drink responsibly.

  • Game Night. Whether it's Scrabble, Chess, or DND, game night is an easy choice for the home bound.

And you can change it up, too, so boredom doesn't set in. Every Friday (or whatever day you've chosen to be special) doesn't have to be a movie night. You can have a Friday cupcake baking tournament between family members or a homemade gourmet meal night. There are a lot of options to make your special day fun.

Get plenty of rest

I feel the experts can't emphasize this one enough. Better rested people can better cope with stress. I speak from experience when I say that my fuse is always shortest when I didn't get a good night's sleep. There are so many tips and tricks out there for a getting the best sleep, so pick your favourite and get your quality ZZZs.

Don't forget to exercise

In the best of times it's important to keep active. So make extra certain you don't leave it out now! Even if you can't get to the gym right now, you can take a spin around the yard or even through the house if needs must. Yoga is a good choice if you have limited space. My personal favourite form of exercise is the dance break.

Set Aside some alone time

You're probably asking me, "What? I need alone time in Quarantine?" Yep. Believe it or not, everyone needs a little time and space to recharge their personal batteries. We don't need to be with everyone in the house every second of every day, which is easy to do when everyone is home. Both children and adults benefit from a little quiet time to themselves. Not to mention our pets would also like a break from snuggles from time to time. Some people (and creatures) need more or less alone time than others, so be sure to be respectful of others' needs within your household.

Start a new hobby or revisit an old one

If your new routine requires a little padding, now is a perfect time to take up a new hobby or revisit and old one. So much is available online, it's easy to get going with a new hobby from the comfort of your own home; whether it's making something tangible or learning a new skill and expanding your knowledge. Revisiting an old hobby is a good way to get back to doing something you love. And if you're like me, you probably have those tools already in house, packed away in a closet somewhere waiting for "someday." Well guess what? "Someday" has landed squarely in our laps. So take out your hobby, dust it off, and give it some love.

Last words of advice

  • Do follow the rules and guidelines from the local and federal authorities. This isn't about you personally, it's about protecting lives.

  • The CDC has a great website with information to help you navigate these turbid times. Avail yourself of it here.

  • We will get through this!

Lastly, be kind to one another! Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay home.

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