Q. – Do you have any advice for fighting ‘cabin fever’?
Cabin fever is what we experience when we are isolated and generally confined to one location. It may make us feel irritable, bored, lethargic, restless, unable to focus, or unmotivated. Often the imposed rule that we cannot go out is more stressful than the implication of the rule itself. Simply being told we cannot go out makes us want to go out and we do not like the feeling that we are not free to move around. If you can go out, make sure you do so once a day – even if it is just a walk around the block or to sit in the garden.
To help combat cabin fever, make sure you have a routine – get up, shower, eat breakfast, schedule exercise at home or locally if possible and you’re not self-isolating. Getting yourself ready for the day as you would normally will help you psychologically.
It’s easy to feel that the days all roll into one – I’ve heard many people comment that they lose track of what day it is at the moment. Try to distinguish between the days somehow if you can. Perhaps alter what you’re making for dinner, what exercise you are doing, who you are talking to, etc. It’s easy for the hours to quickly pass you by when you’re at home all the time, which is fine if you’re resting, but it is also useful to have daily or weekly goals so that you feel that you are achieving something.
Exercise is also very important. If you cannot go outside, there are many online classes available, both live and recorded. Connecting with other people, knowing they are doing the same exercise class at the same time as us can help us to feel connected. Humans are social creatures and this feeling of connection with others will boost your mood.
Taking up a new hobby might also help or rearranging your house to give it a different ‘look and feel’.