By Jason Lin; Edited by Zoe Wei
I must be honest, the title of this article is quite the misnomer. There will be no uplifting barrage of tips and tricks for you to stay healthy, nothing motivational, nothing inspirational and there will be nothing remotely close to advice. In fact, this list shouldn’t be a representation of what you ought to do but rather, the disappointing truth that ends up occurring anyway.
Set strict routines Sleeping at past 3am for no reason at all
“Setting strict routines for yourself is one way to stay disciplined when the world around you is in disarray. This can involve tasks like timetables which strictly regiment every hour of your day, or a fixed bedtime and wake up time so that when lockdown ends, your schedule won’t be thrown into chaos.”
Or so people say. However, being stuck at home for weeks on end subtly scratches away at your pre-lockdown circadian rhythm. This physiological change can be so gradual that it goes unnoticed but the outcome is always the same. There will be nights where the ticking of the clock monotonously taps in the background and the hours slip through your fingers, right until you can no longer tell the difference between the glaring white lights of your room and the vividly orange glow of the rising sun. Alternatively, there will be mornings where your dazed, half-awake state switches off five consecutive alarms reflexively before waking up in a cold sweat well past noon, full of guilt and perplexed at what you have just accomplished. Regardless, at least there aren’t any deadlines you have to meet or classes you have to attend.
Exercise Lazily collapsing prone on the couch
“The natural descent into inactivity through prolonged isolation should be combated with regular exercise. This can be as little as a daily morning stroll but consistency is key. Soon, you will experience overwhelming benefits including less stress, increased mood and a general feeling of refreshment”
The burning motivation to become a six-packed monster and jump-starting your Olympic career is quickly extinguished when you are exposed to the imprisoning comfort of your own bed. The prospect of going outside is eliminated with the constant excuse of “COVID”, and a daily exercise routine may consist of 15 trips back and forth to the refrigerator. Your home gym setup has been abandoned and gathers dust while any weight gained goes right under the radar.
Tidy Up Observing the slow transition of your room into a pigsty
“Lockdown is the perfect time to restore order to the household chaos. Take this time to clean up all the laundry, dishes and built-up clutter over the last few months. Whether it be a full clean or just some simple straightening, it will make you feel productive, increase your mood and improve the overall living environment.”
It seems that being constantly surrounded by disarray makes you blind to how dirty your room actually is. You begin to become acclimated to your environment while simultaneously contributing to the mess. Before you know it, the entire floor may be covered with a single layer of clothes but you look at that and shrug it off. Only when lockdown ends and a fresh pair of eyes meets the room do you undergo the most shocking revelation about the abject chaos of your living quarters.
Read Binge intellectually vacuous shows that have no impact on your life
“Within a world full of distraction, fake news and boundless social media feeds, aim to pick up those old books on your bookshelf and give it a read. Reading is a meditative task and will help you reduce stress, provide you with an escape and also keeps you intellectually stimulated.”
Those dusty manuscripts from an entire different century can stay where they are. We all know that a bookshelf is a decorative facade to make you seem intelligent. What we’re really doing is slouching over our computer, browsing Netflix and looking for a show that even slightly piques your interest. However what you realise is that after a week, while your lockdown “to-watch” list has been exhausted, the perusal of titles doesn’t stop. Before you know it, you’re watching a third-rate budget show with the most predictable plot and cheesiest acting, but pressing the pause button is about as difficult as opening your notes on the desk.
Earn Money Online Watch in despair as your bank account enters stasis, offset by the fact that your expenses have also plummeted
“Though it is a shame that many businesses and jobs are forced to shut down due to the pandemic, take this opportunity to dabble in some alternative sources of income. Even if you are working from home, the abundance of extra time permits you to try and earn some extra cash, whether it be from selling services or investments.”
It might seem like a miracle: being stuck at home all day forcibly cuts your lavish weekly spending habits and finally, you’re giving time for your bank account to recover. Despite this, you quickly realise that your income is also frozen, turning your account into a time-bomb, the fragments of money left trickling away until one day it will become nothing. This surely makes you re-evaluate if that Ubereats order is really necessary.
Cook and Eat Healthy Living off your doomsday stash of canned food
“With the absence of dine-in restaurants and the inconvenience of takeaway, lockdown is the perfect time to explore new skills. Have a go at meal planning, cooking or baking and at the same time, eat healthier, cheaper and be rewarded for your efforts”
You may think your dreams of piloting a Michelin-star restaurant have been manifested and you’re inspired by those periodic Gordon Ramsay tutorials on YouTube, so you head to your kitchen only to be immediately disheartened by the amount of work that needs to be done. Perhaps your vision was tunneled into the result of delicious food which, let’s face it, wasn’t probably going to be edible anyway. Apart from that, the cleaning and preparation seemed so tedious, and why should you bother going to all the effort when there’s a pack of instant noodles sitting on the table?