Who would have guessed it? The world as we know it is on lockdown. We’re swapping our morning commute for an extra forty-five minutes tucked under the covers, contemplating whether to shimmy downstairs to the DIY work station in something a little more boujee than the old loungewear set we wore yesterday. Our schedules may be different and our actions may be limited, but this won’t last forever. Before we know it, we will opening the frontdoor to our friends, exchanging not only smiles and a tight squeeze but a bottle of prosecco to celebrate the start of something new. As our glasses clinck together and our overly-excited cheers echoes across the nation, we will look back on these days with pride, not only for those who fought on the frontline behind supermarkets tills and hospital beds, but for ourselves. Why? Because we made it.
The majority of the media is bombarding our television screens with updates and statistics. While it is important to keep up to date with the latest news and advice to help keep ourselves and those around us safe, we shouldn’t subject ourselves to scaremongering and panic. Aside from keeping safe, the most liberating thing we can do is to brighten community spirits, count our blessings and use self-isolation as an opportunity for self-reflection and growth. With this comes staying motivated, so here are my top steps to stay motivated whilst isolating at home.
Write a to-do list
Every morning whilst I sip away at my morning coffee, I like to write a to-do list. By forming a cohesive list of all the important tasks you want to complete, not only are you reminding yourself of what you need to do that day, but it forces you to mentally plan out how you are going to achieve your goals. It also helps to add structure to your days, as if you were still at work. The most satisfying part is getting to tick things off the list as you go, as a symbol of success and reminding your productivity.
My top tip for writing a to-do list: as you jot down all the work tasks and house chores you want to complete by the end of the day, make a second list of the top 3 tasks that are most important. Even if you don’t manage to get everything done, at least you can prioritize certain tasks, heighten your productivity and keep you feeling motivated.
Keep your days structured
When we’re at work or school, our days are beautifully structured with a start time, a lunch break and the best part of the day, home time. However, being isolated at home, we don’t always have this luxury and instead we’re left to create our own structure. By planning in advance when we’re going to have lunch or take a break for our daily spout of exercise, we can keep ourselves motivated. Let’s face it, it’s nice to keep track of time and look forward to a delicious home-made lunch or a walk around the block.
This could also include meal-planning to ensure you aren’t being tempted to order a delivery on a daily basis. Perhaps, you could schedule in a special ”cheat” meal for a specific time and day to keep your eating habits structured. It is also a great way to have something to look forward to! Who doesn’t enjoy an evening in on the sofa with good food?
Clean and unclutter your surroundings
Forget the saying ‘you are what you eat’, you are where you live, meaning, if you surround yourself in a cluttered, unorganized environment you are likely to become demotivated and fall into the habit of being lazy. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend all weekend spring cleaning your home, but by being aware of your surroundings and keeping your desk and bedroom organized, you are more likely to feel motivated to get up in the morning with a desire to be productive. Trust me.
Start a 30 day fitness challenge
If like me you feel slightly discombobulated in the exercise department since the temporary closure of gyms, why not involve yourself in a fitness challenge? Not only is it another great way to add structure to your days, but you are bound to feel more motivated day after day when you begin to notice changes in your fitness ability. Personally, I find that the more active I am the more inclined I am to step away from snacking unnecessarily or eating out of sheer boredom. So, if you’re looking for a way to maintain a healthy lifestyle, this one is for you!
Recommendations: Adriene’s 30 Days of Yoga and Blogilates’ 30 Day Challenges (e.g. thighs, abs, arms, etc)
Keeping up with your friends
I don’t know about you, but one of my favourite ways to find motivation when I’m feeling blue is to speak to my friends. Not only will they give you support to kick-start a new wave of inspiration, but they’re bound to distract you from your worries by making you laugh by sending you a hilarious self-isolation meme, or in my case, a Gemma Collins mem-aay. Keeping up with your friends can help you to stay social whilst distancing which is incredibly important for our mental health! Even if you’re like me and are forgetful when it comes to replying to messages, checking up on your friends will fill their days with joy as well as your own.
My top-tip for socialising whilst isolating: find a virtual pub quiz and organise a group call with your friends so you can do it together. Not every day has to be a texting day.
This too shall pass
Most importantly, this too shall pass. These days of self-isolation will not last forever and before we know it, the streets will be full of life again. Planning for the future and reflecting on what we want to achieve over the coming years is a great way to kickstart motivation and a brilliant opportunity for self-growth. Self-isolation may have its challenges, but by testing ourselves will we uncover new strengths that we had not yet discovered.