Twenty years into the new millennium, we’ve all come to expect significant changes as each year unfolds. However, the year 2020 certainly took those expectations and ran away with them to some extent. The global coronavirus pandemic introduced us all to lockdown measures. Many states have since put on hold their plans to reopen, or locked down again after reopening.
Managing one’s income and basic needs is essential to survive this extended period of uncertainty, but you can’t overlook your well-being either. But how much can you do when confined to your home? The answer might surprise you. Like an injection molding supplier can fashion almost anything to meet the specifications of a project, you’ll find that human beings can be most flexible and creative amid restrictions. Here are some ways in which you can use a new lockdown period to grow and thrive at home.
Take on a bodyweight challenge
In the old normal, people would make commitments to exercise regularly and improve their fitness. After some time, those commitments would fade as schedules got busy, levels of energy and motivation dipped, and the gym just seemed too out of the way for a daily visit.
Thanks to the information age, we know that you don’t need to hit the gym to get a good dose of daily exercise. Lockdown measures tend to give people more free time, and you can certainly get a good workout every day with bodyweight exercises. Ordinary household items and fixtures can substitute for specialized equipment. For those with limited floor space at home, there are exercises such as wall squats which don’t need more than standing room. You can even get a good workout while lying in bed.
Despite their merits, bodyweight exercise routines can result in improvement plateaus for many people. This is only a problem if you don’t increase variety and difficulty. Train for a proper bodyweight challenge; instead of sticking to standard pushups, pull-ups, and squats, try the one-armed or one-legged versions of those exercises. Or attempt an exercise that requires complex coordination, such as a handstand. This way, you won’t just accomplish your daily quota of physical activity; you can actually accomplish a feat of physical strength worth celebrating like a personal record.
Practice reading as a skill
Reading is a great way to pass the time during what would otherwise be idle moments. We can listen to audiobooks on a drive, or flip through ebooks on our devices on the daily commute. Under lockdown, most of us will have plenty of time to make rapid progress on our reading lists. However, this isn’t just a chance for you to read more. There’s nothing wrong with reading for pleasure, but when you’re in a quiet, distraction-free environment, you have the opportunity to focus on what you’re reading, and improve reading as a skill.
Set yourself a reading challenge. Start to curate your reading list and explore the authors whose work inspired your current favorites. Try re-reading a book you encountered long ago, which lets you approach the work from a more mature perspective. Or you could tackle one of the great works from the canon of world literature. Unlike lighter reading materials, these exercises will challenge you to expand your breadth and depth as a reader. In turn, this practice will allow you to stimulate your intellect, develop empathy, and become a better learner.
Find ways to help your community
In the early days of the pandemic and ensuing lockdown measures, many people turned to social media in order to stay connected. However, simply being active on social media may not be enough to replace the value of our real-life social interactions in terms of well-being. If you’re not purposeful in the way you use social media, you can actually end up feeling more isolated, and increasing your exposure to misinformation or posts that increase status anxiety.
Being confined within our homes can pose the biggest threat to our well-being in terms of its social impact. It’s great to use the internet to stay in touch with your loved ones; even better if you can find ways to reconnect online with old friends. But the best way you can overcome this difficulty is to challenge yourself to turn outward and help others while under lockdown. Even if all you’ve got is time and an internet connection, there are ways in which you can volunteer and make a difference in the lives of people who’ve been dealt a worse hand.
Staying under lockdown doesn’t have to be entirely about survival. If you’ve got that bit covered, then push yourself to improve your well-being with these challenges, and you can emerge stronger from the experience.