Isn’t it funny how we’re now yearning for what we once considered to be monotonous everyday routines?
All of a sudden, we’ve found ourselves missing those very everyday things, such as working, dining out, and exercising. Things that we quite possibly took for granted. Things that we can’t wait to get back after the coronavirus disappears.
And after spending a great deal of time apart from one another while social distancing, we also find ourselves just missing those simple social interactions whether it’s at work, in the shops, on the school run, in the dog park, in a restaurant, at the gym, and so on.
Yes, it is these seemingly mundane moments and routines from our previous everyday lives that now feel like a luxury. These are things everyone is eager to get back.
But, missing such things, no matter how “every day” they are, is normal. As humans, we thrive on routine and predictability. Through this routine, we know what’s going to happen and it gives us a sense of control.
News that we’ve got at least another three weeks with these isolation and social distancing measures in place the other day was probably not what you wanted to hear.
Luckily, it’s possible to maintain some sense of normalcy. Routines are important during these times, especially healthy ones.
You might not be able to eat a plate of rainbow-coloured fresh produce at every meal or keep up with your usual gym workout while social distancing, but there are some ways of adding more routine into your every day and staying healthy at the same time.
Begin with a little self care
Before self-isolation, it’s likely that you woke up at a predetermined time and plodded through your daily ritual without giving it a second thought.
You got up at the same time, showered, brushed your hair and teeth, applied makeup, grabbed a coffee and breakfast, and continued with your day, whether that meant commuting to work, dropping your kids off at school, or doing something else.
The best and easiest way to get into a “new” routine is to use parts of the one you have already.
You can start by setting times throughout the week to get up, maintain a regular morning routine, and as the day progresses, aim to keep that positive progress going as well as you can. Adding a little self-care into your routine can be as simple as eating healthily, exercising, leaving the house for fresh air, and getting plenty of sleep.
We all know the difference a shower can make first thing in the morning, or keeping to a consistent sleep schedule can make.
Regardless of your circumstances, it’s almost certain you have some obligations to get things done like housework, cooking, and working remotely.
If you’ve made your living room your new “office”, continue about your workday as much as you possibly can, ensuring that you stop for breaks, lunch, and short walks throughout the day.
Plotting in virtual coffee breaks with colleagues is a great way to add some normality and social time to your day too.
At the moment, our homes can feel claustrophobic, or restrictive. Keeping on top of your chores can also make life feel more normal, as well as helping you feel positive about your environment.
Continue with your everyday house jobs such as making your bed, emptying the dishwasher, doing the laundry, and so on.
As boring as it may sound, cleaning and doing a few chores every day will not only occupy your time, but it’ll also relieve some of the stress. Doing a little each day can make big tasks much more manageable.
Create balanced meals
Before this all started, what did you usually eat? Now more than ever mealtimes have become a framework for our day, so it’s a great way to make life feel more normal.
A drastic change to our diet — whether good or bad — can leave us feeling off-kilter, so if your diet is usually packed with vegetables, or high in protein, then try and keep this up.
Equally, if you normally plan your meals and meal prep, then why not start this backup? It’s a good way to stay on track with your diet and help you feel more normal from the inside out. Here’s some of our favourite meal prep recipes.
It may also be important that you don’t forget those treats that keep you sane. If you usually get a takeaway or eat out on a Friday, then why not recreate it yourself — here’s a “fakeaway” recipe ideas from us.
Plan out your exercise
If you exercised on a regular basis before this whole coronavirus thing, not getting enough physical exercise could be torturous for you.
However, it is possible to exercise and keep it in your routine — it just might mean being a little more creative with what you do, what equipment you use, and where you do it.
When it comes to your exercise, making a plan can really help. Try and exercise at a certain time on certain days throughout the week, as this will help you create more structure.
Exercising first thing in the morning is a great way of clearing your head and setting yourself up for the rest of the day. You can even plan out each workout at the start of the week, the same as you might with your gym routine.
If you have access to open spaces, then jogging, cycling, skipping, and doing yoga are all types of exercise you can do.
And since you can’t get to the gym and attend one of your regular exercise classes, get online. The internet is teeming with free YouTube and Instagram workouts. You can even check out some of our workouts.
Take home message
We may be trying to navigate our way through a global pandemic, but keeping up with your healthy everyday routines — whether that’s working out in the morning, starting the day with a healthy breakfast or creating time to relax and unwind — can give you a sense of control, even when everything seems up in the air and uncertain.