Social distancing, or stay-safe-at-home, has been the clarion call for most governments and health organizations all over the world for the better part of the year 2020.
But then there is a problem. With literally nothing interesting going on in the world right now, staying at home has become extremely boring and stressful for most people. If you are one of those people, here is your solution: Prepare your home for social distancing. Here are 16 tips that work:
1. Create an office space
Many people have lost their jobs due to the persistent spread of coronavirus. If you still have your job, you need to be happy and not stressed. Working from home is the best anyone can wish for during a ravaging pandemic like the one we are experiencing right now.
Now, instead of complaining about how hard working from home is, a better idea would be to improve your home office/working space to make it more comfortable and functional. You can start by investing in a standing desk, an ergonomic office chair, and better Wi-Fi.
2. Make your home cozy
Move or rearrange furniture around the house in order to maximize floor space. That will make your home feel less cramped. If you have some money saved up, add a few extra silky throws, some fluffy pillows, a new rug, and some squishy blankets to make the home a little cozier.
3. Add natural light
A simple home remodeling project such as adding an extra window will give your home the gentle breeze and extra natural light that you have been missing since you stopped going outdoors. If you don’t have a budget for a remodel, you should consider dressing down the windows to allow in more light. You really shouldn’t cover them up now that you are constantly at home.
Pro tip: Try to reorganize your furniture so that you spend most of your days in areas with the most daylight and areas that help you make the most of your view. You can, for example, set up your home workstation at the window facing the city, or the beach if you are that lucky.
4. Prepare for medical emergencies
Ensure that you have the following:
- A list of personal emergency contacts, particularly if you live alone and have an underlying health issue. It could be a list of relatives, neighbors, or friends who are aware of your health issue and who you can count on for help.
- Details about your doctors or healthcare providers, including home, office, and emergency room phone numbers if you have them. Your insurance providers’ information and your medical records can also be helpful in case you are taken to the emergency room unconscious. Keep them in a place where someone you trust can easily access.
- Stock up on all the medication you need for at least a month, or two, and have a plan for how to get refills.
5. Invest in indoor plants
These are good for three reasons. First, they are beautiful so they will improve your home’s synthetic appeal. Second, they purify your indoor air so you don’t get intoxicated in the home. And third, they are just like pets – they keep you company and allow you to love and care for them. Plants will give your life some sense of purpose.
If you don’t like the increased responsibility that comes with owning a live plant, you can stock up on dried flowers. Those will add color in your home and will never die even if you neglect them after the lockdown is lifted.
6. Stock up bath and hygiene products
Many people have stocked up on toilet paper, which is great, but that is not all you need. Have enough hand soap for 2-3 months, feminine hygiene products, concentrated laundry detergent, shampoo, and other bathroom and kitchen cleaning supplies. If you have a baby, stock up on diapers, formula, and baby wipes, etc.
7. Stock up on food
This is simple: Ensure that you have all the foods that you need while stuck indoors. Have your dried grains, soup, and stews, dried fish, cured meats- anything you normally use in the kitchen!
8. Bring in nice smells
Ensure that your pillows, couches, clothes, and everything within your living spaces smell nice. Bring in scented candles, reed diffusers, or DIY potpourri.
In as much as you want to feel comfortable at home during this period, clutter could be preventing you from achieving this. You probably have been keeping clutter because your hands have been full of other things to do. Now that you are spending most of your time at home, there is enough time to do this.
The best way to do it in an organized manner is to start from one room to the other. Remove the things that you no longer use from the house. From this you can identify those that you can donate to a worthy cause; now is a good time to lend a hand to the less fortunate. Throw the rest away.
10. Make a home mini-spa
One thing that has probably been curtailed from your normal schedule is your favorite spa sessions. However, you can still recreate the moments in your bathroom. Grab some essential oils, cider vinegar, noble vegetable oils, and other ingredients to make cosmetic treatments and masks. You can always get a guide online on how to prepare one.
To complete the spa feeling, light scented candles as you soak away in your bath. You will love the rejuvenated you at the other side of the session in your home spa. Besides, a little escape from the hustles of taking care of the home will be good for your relaxation.
Above everything else, you want to stay in a clean place during this period. General cleaning will instantly transform your home and improve the air that you are breathing. Take your time to clean the rarely washed items in your homes such as the carpet, curtains, sofa, and windows. Dust the cabinets and shelves.
A thorough cleaning helps in identifying things that need minor repairs that you could have otherwise not noticed. You also find misplaced things that you’ve frantically been looking for.
Talking of things getting lost in the house now is the time to create a territory for each and every item in your house. No one likes looking for items everywhere with no success. Organize your storage and categorize items according to how frequently they are used. Utilize to top shelves and cabinets for rarely used items such as party glasses and sewing kits. Place the frequently used ones such as shoe brushes in the lower shelves.
13. Make your bedroom comfortable
Even if you are working from home, you can’t help but spend a little more time in your bedroom. Some days you will feel lazy to get out of bed and end up working on your laptop from your bed. It will give you much comfort if you made your bedroom a little cozier. Start by cleaning the mattress, if it is too much work for you, you can always pay someone to do it. Consider changing your beddings; those made from natural materials are always a good choice. Get comfortable pillows and a cozy blanket. Lastly, block out the light with blackout curtains to ensure that you are enjoying quality sleep.
14. Dedicate a corner for exercising
Compared to when you were commuting for work, working from home doesn’t guarantee much movement. There are no stairs to climb, you don’t have to run for the elevator or bus and you are no longer walking around the office as it is your norm.
We all know that exercise is good for you, especially if you want to stay productive working from home. Dedicate a corner in your house for your exercise. Now that you can’t go to your gym session, create a mini-gym at home. Invest in some equipment, starting with a gymnastic mat for yoga, fitness bands, dumbbells, and weights.
15. Create a library at home
One way to expand your knowledge is by reading extensively. You probably listen to an audiobook in your daily commutes to work, but now is the time to feel the sweetness of turning pages and reading from a book. Purchase a display cabinet or a bookcase to create a library at home. Complete the look with framed photos and small indoor plants placed on the empty places of the bookcase.
16. Create a relation spot at the balcony
Staying at home will give you enough time to do your favorite activities such as painting, playing board games, and reading among others. You will enjoy these activities more if you have a cozy, relaxing space dedicated to this. If you have a balcony, it presents the best option for a relaxation space. Place a chair or two and a table on the balcony. Besides using this space for your activities, it also poses a soothing space where you can watch the sunrises and sunsets.
Stay connected during this social distancing and isolation season. This is good for your mental health. Keep your mind engaged all the time be it through physical exercise, indulging in DIY projects, or doing household chores. Learn a new skill if you can. Anything that will get you to the other end of the pandemic safe, sound, and healthy, by all means, do it!