Staying grounded and staying well in quarantine


"Meditate" by RelaxingMusic is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Some elect to mediate in a attempt to gain peace during these hard times.

Six months ago the U.S. was infiltrated by a new type of foreign enemy: the highly contagious COVID-19. As time dragged on, Americans watched the death toll from the virus rise and became acquainted with that constant pit in their stomachs. The country has faced a tremendous amount of grief in these short six months since this coronavirus made its frontier into the United States. As the public adjusts to life with societal restrictions, it’s important to protect the mind just as much as the body.

How does Quarantine Affect us?

Boring. Repetitive. Isolating. The reality of staying inside for weeks, even months at a time is jarring. As social creatures, people need a shoulder to cry on and someone to laugh with, but when unable to, more than our emotional well-being can suffer. In Carly Frinter’s 2005 research study Lonely Madness: The Effects of Solitary Confinement and Social Isolation on Mental and Emotional Health,” she highlights the effects of loneliness, finding that extreme loneliness can trigger stress, impair decision making abilities, cause lack of sleep, and ultimately damage communication skills.

It’s no question the loneliness and boredom of quarantine is enough to make one stir-crazy, but with a seemingly endless amount of time to kill, citizens look towards new ways to dispel negativity and usher in productivity.

The News

 The beginning of quarantine brought a period where everyone was glued to their respective news networks in case of any developments, dips and spikes, ebbs and flows–but it’s important to follow the right sources and use them in moderation. Headline Stress Disorder, coined by Dr. Steven Stosny, established psychology author and professor at the University of Maryland, is a perfect term to describe the anxiety and stress of being so emotionally affected by constant news coverage. But being exposed to false information can create unnecessary stress. Sites like compare how publications on both sides of the political spectrum cover stories differently. This site is free from sensationalized titles, rumors, speculation, fear-mongering, and even comment on popular news sites to expose bias and details omitted from the story. The site can act to False cures and even false hysteria surrounding the virus have made their rounds just this year.  Stay informed to stay safe.

Take the Measures you need

Keep the mind at ease and be sure to stay protected by following CDC guidelines. Wear masks when in public spaces, keep six feet apart from others, and avoid crowded areas to put any fears to rest.

Get Moving

Embrace the (much needed) rush of endorphins that comes with physical activity. Not only does a runner’s high do wonders for mood and energy levels, but it can boost relaxation, sleep quality, and cardiovascular health. Take up a form of exercise that’s fun and enjoyable, whether it be dancing, running, H.I.I.T, yoga, sports, or even just a walk in nature. There’s plenty of free exercise channels on YouTube and apps from professionals to help get anyone started on their fitness journey.

Put Time Towards Something New

Whether it be a creative endeavor, learning a new skill, or improving oneself in general; having time for your own goals can be a therapy in its own right. By ditching a constant stream of content on social media, it’s possible to reclaim a sense of creativity. Instead of consuming the work of others, now is the time to create. 

Establish a Healthy Routine

When there’s nowhere better to be and the normal rhythm of life has been obstructed, it’s vital to take initiative to regain structure. Everyone knows the feeling of sleeping in and waking up at a pathetic hour, wasting their day on social media, and getting nothing done simply because there’s nothing better to do. But by creating a unique routine, it becomes easier to triumph over the temptation to sloth in comforters all day. Save time and dedicate it towards a healthy habit, keep track of success, and make an excuse to get the task done. Use this time to finally get in those morning runs, study for exams, play an instrument, or work toward larger goals like starting a business.

The Best Medicine

Although quarantine can be boring, tedious, and repetitive, it gives the gift of free time. This unique situation is only what one makes of it, so for however long the nation might be secluded in their homes, there still exists a promise of opportunity and productivity.  In some cases, a positive outlook is the best medicine.