When Covid-19 Isolation Ends
Are you nervous about coming out of isolation? As restrictions on work and social life start to lift, it’s important to stay healthy when you begin to venture out more. It can be a stressful time because the COVID-19 virus is still raging, even though our economy is begging for a reboot.
The good news is that you don’t have to freak out or look like a freak when you finally emerge from your self-induced cocoon. Believe it or not, you can protect yourself and others and still conduct yourself in a respectable way.
You don’t have to lose your cool. You can be a source for positive energy. You can be productive and stay healthy at the same time.
Want to know how?
Here are a few tips for the post-isolation gentleman.
1. Exercise at Home, Just for a Little Longer
Gyms are starting to re-open all over the country. There are strict guidelines in place for social distancing though. So, you might find that there are fewer pieces of exercise equipment at your disposal. You might also need to change your behavior when it comes to socializing with your fellow gymgoers.
These constraints will have obvious effects on your gym experience. It just won’t feel like it used to before. You’ve probably been working out at home for the past few months so why not keep it up. Exercising at home or outdoors will greatly reduce your exposure and risk of infection.
When you’re working up a sweat, your pores are opened and you’re more likely to touch your nose and mouth. Some gyms also lack proper ventilation. So, there’s a bad combination of factors that make your local gym a hotbed for bacteria and viruses.
You don’t have to go out and buy a set of weights or some other expensive equipment for your home. If you normally run a treadmill, then take up a weekly run in the park instead. If you just do some light cardio, then maybe you could take up cycling. The point is to minimize your exposure whenever and however possible.
2. Stylish Gloves and Scarf
There’s so much talk about masks, gloves and PPE (personal protective equipment) these days. For most people, the guidelines are fuzzy on what types of masks and gloves you should be wearing and when. There are surgical masks, respirator masks, and cloth masks. So, which one should you choose?
How about you don’t choose any of those? Instead, you can wear a scarf to protect your nose and mouth from spreading or receiving airborne particles. The scarf can feature your favorite logos, colors, and reflect your personal style. It doesn’t have to look like something you’d wear to the hospital.
Plastic gloves look so cheap and they’re really nowhere near as effective as simply washing your hands frequently. You’re more likely to cross contaminate and spread bacteria around by touching everything you own with your gloves. There is an alternative though.
You could wear nice gloves instead. (Imagine that?) If you do feel the need to wear gloves in certain circumstances such as shopping at the supermarket, then why not wear a nicer pair? Try to pick up synthetic leather gloves that can easily be washed and reworn, time and time again.
3. Washing Hands Properly
People that used to wash their hands all the time were once thought to be germaphobes. Now, it’s the latest trend. It’s important to wash your hands frequently because if you have bacteria or virus particles on your hands, you don’t want to accidently touch your nose, mouth or eyes. That’s how you get sick.
You can also pick up or put down bacteria and virus particles on surfaces around you. Washing your hands frequently is a good way to minimize your potential for getting infected and spreading infection. Try to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. You can hum the chorus of your favorite song to help you remember.
4. Fist bump. No Handshakes. No Touching Your Face.
This could be one of the most difficult guidelines to follow because touching others is a big part of social interaction. It’s one of those things that you never truly miss until it’s gone. However, shaking hands might not be the best practice for social greetings right now.
To avoid spreading germs, bacteria, etc. you might want to adopt the fist bump for all your greetings. You don’t have to stand that close to someone to do it and you avoid making contact with the palm and fingers.
You touch your face with your palm and fingers, not your fist. So, the good ol’ fist bump is way more hygienic.
Now, have you ever noticed how much you touch your face? This is one of the main vehicles for getting bacteria and viruses into your body. If you’ve touched something unsanitary and then tweak your nose a bit, then you’ve likely put harmful micro-pathogens inside your body.
If you have a habit of excessively touching your face, then you might want to practice holding an object in your hand like a pen or pencil. It will keep your hand occupied and help increase your mindfulness about touching your face excessively.
5. Avoid Compulsive Shopping
These are certainly uncertain economic times. It’s the hard truth, but it needs to be shared. Millions of Americans have lost their jobs in recent months and the global economy took a nosedive. Yet, stress can lead you to compulsive shopping just to cure boredom or provide a temporary rush of the feels.
Just because things are slowly easing toward a new normal, don’t get disillusioned and start loosening your purse strings just yet. This is the time to be economically cautious and frugal. So, before you click the BUY button, assess what you already have.
Save some money for a rainy day because you never know what problems are on the horizon. A gentleman takes good care of himself and his loved ones. That means you might need to avoid buying some luxury items for a while. If you can’t ignore the urge to buy something new, then buy something useful. Buy something that will last. Buy something that provides great value.
6. Check on elderly, disabled and high risk neighbors.
Part of being a gentleman is caring for the less fortunate. You might not have everything you need, but consider the elderly, disabled and those people who are at high risk of succumbing to infectious diseases. These people are your neighbors, family members and friends.
You can give them a phone call or a quick text just to ask if there’s anything you can do to help them. They might feel the need to stay indoors even though others are venturing out. You could pick up some items for them while you’re out shopping or stop by to do some work at their home.
Not only will you ease their days, but you’ll also give yourself a healthy mental boost, as well. Studies show that being kind to others helps to stem your own feelings of depression and anxiety. Sure, you might have things you’re struggling with, but helping other people will make you feel better, too.
7. Avoid constant and stressful social media updates.
When you were in deep isolation it was difficult to avoid scrolling through social media. It was something to pass the time, but it wasn’t always good time. Social media feeds collect so much data and throw it at you with the focused strength of a class 5 tornado.
It can become so overwhelming and stressful. Now, that you’re embracing a new normality, you should avoid the constant barrage of social media updates. There’s just way too much negative information now. It can lead to elevated stress levels.
You should use social media to keep up with family members and friends. In fact, you can use it for whatever you want. Just try to avoid getting lost in the echo chamber of stress-inducing posts. You must remember that you can’t fix everything and everybody. So, log off from social media from time to time.
8. Keep a positive attitude for self and others.
Let’s face it – there’s enough negativity in the world right now. It’s easy to find bad news and even worse attitudes. That’s why it’s doubly important to be a beacon for positivity. Thinking positively can have tremendous benefits for your mental and physical health.
Now, imagine spreading those benefits to other people. You can do that by simply providing good reports. Have something positive and uplifting to say when you talk to people is a fine way to make yourself more likeable.
To make it easier, you can look for positive quotes online. You can also check out sites like sciencedaily.com. They have daily news about new scientific discoveries.
You can always find something interesting to share with others about the latest advances in science and technology. Did you know that scientists at Shinshu University just figured out a new way to create clean hydrogen energy from sunlight?
Do you completely understand what that means? Probably not, but it sure does beat retelling the same old sad news from the mainstream media outlets. At the very least, it’s a positive conversation starter.
9. Two laundry sorts. Inside. Outside.
Now that you’re heading out of your home more often and going to more places, you should tweak the way you do laundry. Most guys just have a single laundry bin and toss everything in there until washing day. That might not be a good idea in a world with infectious viruses at large.
You see, medical and scientific experts are still unclear as to how long the coronavirus can last on fabric. They know that it’s certainly not as long as metal (up to 5 days) but no detailed analysis has been conducted about your clothes.
That means it’s up to you to use your best judgement. One thing you can do is separate your laundry into two bins – one for outside clothes and one for indoor clothes. This way, you can rest assured that you can throw that T-shirt on one more time if you’re just lounging around the house. (We know you do it, guys.)
10. Eat and Drink your Medicines.
This isn’t the time to ease up on your own selfcare, gentlemen. Just because you can start heading back into society, doesn’t mean that you should neglect your own health in the process. The best medicines aren’t found in the pharmacy, they’re found in the foods you eat.
Fast food chains are opening back up, but that doesn’t mean you should over-indulge in fatty, greasy takeaway dishes. Stick to the healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. Make sure you’re getting plenty of vitamins and nutrients so that your immune system stays in tip top shape.
Drink at least 2 liters of water every day. If you struggle to keep up with how much water you’re drinking, then try drinking from a reusable bottle. Fill it up first thing in the morning and try to keep filling it up all day long.
The New Gentleman’s Takeaway
Now, imagine yourself keeping up with these 10 post-lockdown tips. You’re less stressed and more prepared for unexpected outcomes. You’re keeping your body and mind in good condition. You’re staying away from negativity and promoting positive attitudes in the people around you.
A gentleman handles the hardships of life with tenacity, courage, and a touch of style. So, become a beacon of hope for others and in some small way you can make the world a better place.
Carry on, gentlemen. Carry on.