Maintaining Self Care During Quarantine

The importance of self love and some ways to take care of yourself while stuck inside.

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned life upside down for people young and old across the world. During these unprecedented times, we’ve all had to transition to working from home, online school, staying away from family and friends, and even a national shortage of toilet paper (who would’ve thought?). 

We know that times like this can be particularly stressful, and sometimes put a strain on one’s mental and physical well being.

It’s important to take care of things while staying at home, whether it be in your work, school, or home life. But it’s also just as important to take some time for yourself and maintain your personal needs. That’s where self care comes in.

In this blog, we’ll be going through two main ideas:

  • The importance of self care
  • Ways to incorporate self care during quarantine

The Importance of Self Care

So, what exactly is self care? Generally, self care means any sort of thing that a person does in order to maintain their mental, physical, and emotional health. Self care can come in many different forms, and is custom to a person’s specific needs. There’s no wrong way to practice self care.

But why exactly do we need self care? In today’s fast-paced, technology-centered society, it becomes easy to forget about ourselves. People are often so busy with other things that they place themselves last on their list of priorities. It’s easy to become so overwhelmed with other responsibilities that we forget to check in on our health.

People are often hesitant to practice self care because they think it could be considered selfish or too indulgent. In reality, self care is just the opposite.

When a person regularly practices self care, they’ll experience all types of benefits. For one, by taking time away from work or home responsibilities, you’ll be able to clear you head. As a result, you’ll be more productive when you go back to those responsibilities

Self care can actually boost your immune system. Practicing self care will activate your body’s parasympathetic nervous system, allowing your body to rest and restore, building up protection against sickness.

Also, self care will improve your physical and mental health overall. Relaxation triggered from self care will increase your energy levels and lower levels of chronic stress. Connecting with your body and creating feelings of peace will also improve your general mood.

Lastly, self care is fun! There are an infinite number of ways to practice self care, making it easy to tailor to your needs and interests.

Some Ways to Include Self Care During Quarantine

Now that we’ve gone over how important self care is, let’s get into some ways to practice self care while practicing social distancing and self-isolation.

As mentioned before, the list of self care options is endless; there’s no way to list all of the ways one can practice self care.

What matters is that you choose something that you will enjoy and that will help you to relax.

Without further ado, here is a list of some ways to practice self care in quarantine:

  • Cook a healthy meal - During these times, some people may not have the time or ability to cook healthy, nourishing food every day. That’s totally okay. However, finding ways to cook a meal made from healthy ingredients will inspire further creativity, and fuel your entire body.
  • Journal - Writing down your feelings is a great way to release inner emotions. Even if writing isn’t your thing, there are tons of ways to journal. Try bullet journaling or art journaling if you prefer alternatives to writing. A great way to start is by putting down all of the things you are grateful for.
  • Get outside - It can feel pretty suffocating to be stuck inside your house, so go outside and soak up some sunshine. Take a walk, do some yoga, or just lay out on a blanket. Go on a trail, or use your backyard if you have one. If you’re going outside in a public area, please remember to practice social distancing
  • Catch up with family and friends - It may not be feasible to meet with loved ones in person right now, but there are plenty of other ways to connect. Through technology, it’s easy to video call family and friends, even in groups. Or, go the classic route; write a letter or card and send it to a loved one.
  • Get creative - Art can be one of the most fun ways to practice self care! There are so many options: drawing, painting, sculpting, calligraphy, photography, etc. Pick one and you can’t go wrong. All you really need to get started is a pencil and paper.
  • Do a social media cleanse - Has social isolation found you scrolling through Instagram or Facebook for hours each day? Are you experiencing severe FOMO? Maybe it’s time to take a break. Turn off social media for a few days or even a couple weeks. Or even just start out by staying off of your phone for 24 hours. This will give you time to refresh and focus on other things.
  • Take a hot shower or bath - Maybe you don’t have time for much self care in your day. Even if you do, a hot shower or bath can do wonders for relaxation. Turn on the water, hop in, and take all the time you need to refresh. For some extra-soothing bath time, add in bath salt, essential oils, or a bath bomb. As an extra bonus, you’ll feel fresh and clean when you get out.
  • Read a book - If you’re into reading or looking to try something new during quarantine, pick up a book! Reading is an awesome way to exercise your mind, and can be done from anywhere. Don’t have a book at home? You can download an e-book or find audio books online! If you don’t know where to get started, here are some book suggestions.

While the world is managing the current pandemic, life can sometimes be too chaotic. That’s why right now it’s important to practice self-care regularly, or try out self-care if it’s something new to you.

Self-care is necessary for everyone, and can be made to fit any person’s interests, needs, and schedule. Even if you only have ten extra minutes per day, use them to better your overall mental and physical well being. 

Even after the virus has passed, self care will continue to be important. Practicing self care is something that everyone should do regularly. We hope that you continue to be safe and stay healthy.

Edited by Cara Jernigan on January 17, 2021

Mason Thompson
Mason Thompson is a high school senior, dog lover, and coffee enthusiast in Owensboro, Ky. She is thrilled to have completed a writing internship with Incadence during her final semester of high school. In the Fall she is excited to begin Brown University with a major in psychology with addition studies in women's and gender studies and sociology. Following her internship, She has stayed on the Incadence staff and is hopeful her writing will continue to help inform individuals about music therapy and healthcare.
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