5 Things To Help Navigate Through The New Normal

By Nicole Garbanzos

Quarantine, the new normal

From social distancing to washing your hands as much as you can, our everyday perception of normal has truly been redefined. From waiting in long grocery lines to wearing a face mask in most public places, it’s easy to become overwhelmed when faced with too many changes at once. So how do we embrace the New Normal?

At the start of the pandemic, I too felt much anxiety and worry. But as unbalanced as we all may feel, I’ve come to learn that there are still ways to focus on the positive, to hope for the best, and a chance for all of us to be better than before. Here are 5 things I’ve done everyday that has helped me throughout these turbulent times.

Always Have Something to Do

Whether you bake, read a book, or start on your spring cleaning, adding some productivity into your post-quarantine life will not only direct your attention elsewhere, but will also get some things done! When you have something to do, you have something to look forward to. Ever since quarantine began, I have cleaned my room every 2 weeks, baked 3 types of brownies, and sewn different kinds of face masks. By occupying your daily routine, you don’t only benefit from the sense of balance it gives, but you also gain a clean room, pastries for a week, and a different face mask you can wear every other day.

Bask In Solitude As Much As You Can

Since the pandemic began, there’s more time for us to simply stop and smell the flowers. Whether you choose to meditate, write, or enjoy the sights and sounds of nature, any ounce of solitude could surely encourage each of us to be as present as we can. I’ve been more than grateful to slow down and focus on myself throughout quarantine. I’ve written more content than usual, meditated for hours every day, and have been able to balance my emotions with thorough understanding. We shouldn’t fear our alone time, as that is the only time when our minds can take a break from other people’s input and we shouldn’t be afraid of doing things by ourselves, as those are the moments when we learn what we’re capable of; we should embrace it.

Learn a New Hobby

Or restart an old one you’ve lost touch with over the years. As our world continues on a slower pace, making yourself occupied with new or old hobbies couldn’t be more of a productive and educational decision in the long run. Throughout quarantine, I have attempted to bake a quarter of my kitchen, sew an array of fabrics into face masks, and slowly get back into music. Whether you decide to paint, bake a cake, or write a song, focusing your attention on something else other than a global pandemic will surely ease your troubles away, even if it’s just for a few hours.

new normal

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Watch Less News

It’s more than okay to stay-up-to-date on information regarding the pandemic, but too much of it could influence your anxiety and fear of it. The news does a great job in keeping us informed of current events in our communities and around the world. But once it starts negatively impacting our emotions, that’s when we should begin to limit our consumption of it. During the start of quarantine, I too would watch the news everyday to stay informed of how Canada and other countries responded to the virus. Eventually, I slowly found my energy drained and felt upset for no reason because I was consuming too much news. In recent months, I’ve lessened my consumption and have found ways to balance my daily routine. I still watch the news for any updates on reopens or changes to any post-pandemic policies, other than that, I keep away from the rest.

Maintain Your Immune System

There is no better time to eat all of your fruits and vegetables, no better moment to have a stable workout schedule, and no better minute to keep up with all of your vitamins. Maintaining a great immune system during a public health emergency is probably the smartest thing all of us can do. Nothing fights off anxiety and worry more than action. Since the beginning of quarantine, in this new normal, I have scheduled workouts, ate foods of high nutrients, and even sleep earlier than expected. These practices haven’t only assured me of my health, but it’s also given me a peace of mind. It’s given me the knowledge that my body is prepared if anything happens and my immune system is ready to fight back.

Though our new normal may consist of increased caution and reminders that we have a long way to go, there is still balance to be found. And though we maintain a 2 metre distance at all times, there is still closeness in the spirit of community. Whether you feel afraid, anxious, or worried, there are still ways to conquer every emotion in this new normal COVID-19 may bring out of us, there are still ways to rise above it all.