21 Ways to Keep Sane during This Pandemic

Social distancing. Self-quarantine. Shelter in place. The new norm…for a while at least. 

We’re all stuck at home for the near future. If you’re worried about how to keep sane during this pandemic, you aren’t alone.  

After all, there’s only so much binging Netflix or Amazon Prime we can do before we get cabin fever.  

Not to worry, we have you covered with 21 ways to keep sane during this pandemic. 

So take a deep breath, remember we’re all in this together, and keep reading below. 

Get Moving 

keep sane during this pandemic
 
If you sit idle and rotate from working at home and binge-watching TV, you’re going to go stir-crazy…fast

Whether you’re rural and have a ton of room to roam, live in the suburbs and have a yard, or you’re in a city apartment, you need to move! 

Not only will exercising help you keep your sanity, but it also boosts the immune system. 

Here are a few ways to get yourself and the entire family moving…and keep sane during this pandemic. 

#1 Exercise online. With gyms and public parks closed, numerous gyms and yoga and pilates studios are offering free or discounted online memberships. To support local businesses, contact your local gyms or studios and see what they have to offer online. 

#2 Exercise as a family. If you live in an area where you won’t easily come into contact with others, go on a family walk. If the weather doesn’t cooperate or if you’re in an area forced to shelter in place, find an exercise video on YouTube to tackle together. Go a step further and set a family exercise schedule and hold each other accountable.  

#3 Play interactive games. Charades and Pictionary don’t require an actual game set and require you to get up and move around. If you don’t own Twister, make your own game board! Or get your groove on with dance games like Just Dance. If you have a Wii or other game console that allows you to play interactive fitness games, make a night out of it! 

#4 Hide-and-seek. This game requires you to have room to play it. If your home or yard is large enough, a game of hide-and-seek gets everyone up off the couch for some good old-fashioned fun.  

#5 Have a dance contest. You don’t have to own a game console and interactive dance games to bust a move. Have a family dance contest. If you’re sheltering in place alone, hop on Zoom, Skype, Houseparty, or Facetime with friends and have a virtual contest. 

#6 Work in the yard. As we move into spring, get outside, and do some yard work or plant a garden. Even little kids can pull weeds, and the sunshine will be good for everyone. Just make sure you stay a safe distance from the neighbors!

#7 Put your gardening skills to the test. If you can get outside in the yard or have access to a rooftop with plant beds, get a veggie garden going. A quick online search will pull up the best online stores to purchase seeds. 

Expand Your Mind 

keep sane during this pandemic
 
Mental fitness is just as important as physical fitness. Lucky for you, there has never been a better time for self-improvement and expanding your mind. 

Keeping your mind sharp will help pass the time, and, when social distancing and shelter-in-place orders are lifted, you’ll be way smarter than before. 

So turn off the TV and get going with these ideas…

#8 Learn a new language. If learning a new language has been on your bucket list for a while, there’s no better time than now to do it. Babbel and Duolingo are excellent apps to get you going. 

#9 Sharpen your cognitive skills. Keep your brain sharp and yourself entertained with crossword puzzles or sudoku. Do it alone, or make it a family affair. 

#10 Learn something new. Is there something you’ve always wanted to learn to do, but didn’t have the time or the money? Whether it’s learning to be a better investor or line dancing, search for how-tos on YouTube. 

#11 Read, read, read (or listen, listen, listen). When was the last time you read a whole book or a whole series? It’s time to go through your shelves and find a good book. Or, if you have a Kindle, download a new one. While most libraries are closed (if not all), don’t forget they have free online resources, which include downloadable ebooks and audiobooks. 

  • FREE RESOURCE: Audible is offering free books to kids on computer, tablet, or phone. According to their site: “Starting today, kids everywhere can instantly stream an incredible collection of stories, including titles across six different languages, that will help them continue dreaming, learning, and just being kids.” Click here to sign up your kids

#12 Take a virtual field trip. While you may not be able to travel, that doesn’t mean you can’t explore some of the world’s best museums, aquariums, and parks. That’s right, you can entertain the whole family and take a virtual field trip. 

  • FREE RESOURCE: Google Arts & Culture teamed up with 5 U.S. parks, and are offering free tours from the comfort of your own home. Click here to learn more
  • FREE RESOURCE: Travel + Leisure recently posted 12 free virtual tours of the world’s most famous museums you have to see! Click here for the list.  

Keep Your Living Space Clean Organized

keep sane during this pandemic
 
Perhaps the #1 way to keep sane during this pandemic is to ensure your living space is picked up and organized. 

After being cooped up for days and weeks on end, a cluttered home is only going to drive you more crazy

Take some time every day to ensure the dishes are done, kids’ toys and crafts are picked up, and your home is clean.

If you have kids, make a chore chart. If you have to, make a game out of picking up and disinfecting your living space. 

Here are a few ways to take it a step further and use this time to organize your home…

#13 Clean your closet. Hopefully, you will never have time like this again to spring clean. Put on some music, an audiobook, or your favorite podcast and get to organizing! If you have kids at home, make a game out of it and see who can give away the most items or organize the fastest. 

#14 Organize your junk drawers. Fess up! You know you have at least one of these! Set aside an hour or two and get to cleaning out your junk. 

#15 Tackle home repairs. Most people have a list of home repairs they keep meaning to get to. If you have the supplies on hand at your home, why not spend a Saturday afternoon tackling that list? 

Take Care of YOU

keep sane during this pandemic
 
Perhaps when you heard the phrase self-isolation or shelter in place, you were thrilled at the idea of working from home in your PJs. 

It’s fine for a day or two, but what many freelancers and employees who work from home can attest to…the fun only lasts so long. 

Here are a few ways to take care of yourself so you keep sane during this pandemic… 

#16 Get dressed. Make the effort each day to get up, shower, and get dressed. You don’t have to wear anything fancy. The point is, if you brush your teeth and hair and actually put on a new change of clothes, you’ll feel a lot better. 

#17 Pamper yourself. Ladies, when is the last time you gave yourself an in-home manicure or pedicure? Just because you are cooped up in the house, it doesn’t mean you can’t take long baths, do your nails, and do facials. Gentlemen, this applies to you, too. Whatever it looks like to you, do it! 

#18 Find alone time. This will be much easier if it’s just you or another person in your home. But if you’re a family of 4 or more in isolation, it’s important to find quality alone time. Even if it’s just 30 minutes alone in the garage, every little bit helps to keep you sane and grounded. 

Give Back 

keep sane during this pandemic
 
One of the best ways to take your mind off yourself and keep sane during this pandemic is to give back to others in need. 

Here are a few ways to give back…

#19 Check on the elderly. Data continues to show that the elderly are most at risk with COVID-19. Do what you can to check on the elderly in your neighborhood and make sure they have enough food and supplies so they don’t have to venture out. Don’t just check in–engage them. Ask how they are doing. Have your kids send them videos of them dancing or putting on a puppet show. It’s also the perfect opportunity to teach your kids the virtue of kindness

#20 Support local restaurants. Order takeout or delivery from your local restaurants. Call them direct or go through a food delivery app like DoorDash, Ubereats, or Postmates. 

#21 Donate food and supplies. Call churches or local food banks in your area and see if they allow you to virtually donate supplies. More and more food banks and charities have this option on their website, where you can order online and have it sent directly to the organization. 

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