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  • Dr. Joe Novak

How to cope when you are stuck at home

Most of us are challenged with the daily effects of confinement due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether you are living alone, with roommates, or with family, you are likely finding it difficult to adjust to this new way of life.


Here are some important and helpful tips as you cope with this unprecedented moment:

1. As humans we thrive on routine and rhythm so, establish a daily purpose by planning your day and organizing a daily schedule.

2. Post a schedule for yourself and those living with you. Encourage input and active participation.

3. Negotiate space in your home for everyone to have alone time, and together time, and designate a space for work time, school time, and homework.

4. Check in with each other, keep communicating, and work through the kinks in your routine. In time, the new routine will become your routine.

5. Share, be understanding, and celebrate the small stuff and what you appreciate in each other.

6. Acknowledge any conflict and allow for home meetings for all to discuss and work through issues. It is okay to say out loud how stressful this feels. Tell each other you are in it together.

7. Maintain an attitude of caring, respect and responsibility.

8. Keep to a healthy sleep routine that everyone at home agrees to.

9. Have fun, laugh and play. Draw, color, listen to or play music, and enjoy puzzles, board games and other games where all can share and participate. Enjoy TV and the internet but pay attention to how much time you are watching TV or on devices. Mix it up each day and be creative. Turn it off or tune it out when you have had enough.

10. Move around at home for exercise and blood flow. Walk in place or create a walking track in your home. Make a chart of your progress and encourage others to join in.

11. Stay connected with others you care about outside your home especially if you are living alone by calling, texting or through video chatting.

12. Above all, stay safe, make healthy choices, and be mindful of what is dear to you.

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