Isolation affects people differently. Some find it hard to be without social contact and crave the days they’ll be surrounded by friends again. Others enjoy being alone and having some extra time to themselves.
Although the current world situation is far from ideal, some people are finding they really enjoy sheltering-in-place and staying home.
It’s hard for some people not to feel guilty about loving being ordered to stay at home. Because the stay-at-home orders are the result of a global tragedy, it’s not exactly something people feel they can express freely. This is especially true because so many others are miserable because they have to stay home.
If you’re happy to be a hardcore homebody, but feeling a little guilty about how it all came about, it’s perfectly okay to feel this way. Here’s how to balance the happiness you feel against the gravity of the situation.
Be Observant, But Don’t Apologize
If this quarantine life didn’t bring you down, that’s really great news! But try to be observant when talking to the people who don’t share your feelings. Shouting it from the rooftops and become the bubbliest person in the world might hurt someone else’s feelings. This is especially likely if he or she has been hit by this situation much harder than you.
For every “I can work from home and not commuting is great!” story, there’s a painful, “I lost my job and it might not ever come back,” story.
Be kind, observant, and respectful, and offer your sympathy or help. Keep your tone positive and light. Try to share some of that happiness you feel through the phone or via text. The person you’re talking to will appreciate it, and you’ll be perceived as friendly and supportive instead of smug.
All that said, don’t ever feel like you have to apologize for your state of mind. Just as your friends have every right to feel miserable, you have every right to enjoy the relief you feel at having a clear schedule.
Still, bragging about how happy and amazing you feel at a time like this isn’t the best look. Perhaps you could share how you’re keeping busy and enjoying your solo time. Give your friends some ideas about how they can enjoy quarantine, too.
Don’t Feel Guilty About Putting Yourself First
How you feel affects your mood, which affects your actions, which affects the work you do, and the people around you. If you’re feeling depressed and sad, the people around you feel that negativity, and work feels like a struggle.
On the other hand, when you’re feeling good and happy, those around you feed off that energy. Any chores you have to do feel light and easy. Putting yourself first isn’t selfish or wrong. It’s actually the best thing you can do for your health, wellbeing, relationships, and work.
Dedicate this time to cater to your own wishes and desires. Ask yourself what would make you happy each day until you start doing those activities daily.
Even if the whole world is feeling depressed, find a little bit of light each day and spend it on yourself. Then, you’ll be able to address other people’s feelings much better and, potentially, help them through these difficult times. It all starts with you.
Allow Yourself to Laugh
Whether you live by yourself or with another person, schedule some time each day to do something fun. Whether it’s baking a delicious cake, singing karaoke, or playing a game of Twister. Anything that brings a smile to your face is worth it.
When you’re feeling happy, embrace it! Allow the feelings of positivity to heal you from the inside, spread all around the world, and offer hope and peace in this time of uncertainty. Everything in life needs balance. Given all the terrible news we hear each day, there has to be some positive to counteract it. Acknowledge that this is your role and wholeheartedly embrace it.
Be Happy, But Don’t Expect Others to Do the Same
Now that you’ve accepted and acknowledged your feelings, it might be tempting to share them with those who are struggling. You might want to tell them how much better they would feel if only they could see the world through your eyes.
Even though your intentions come from a place of compassion and love, people who’ve lost their jobs or, even worse, loved ones, simply can’t see what you see. Even someone who works from home and is in good health has every right to be upset she can’t do the things she’d normally be doing.
As much as you want to help and show people how much better they’d feel, you have to refrain from doing so. You’ll only be met with confusion and resentment. When people are hurting, you have to let them deal with it in their own way, without imposing your own methods and beliefs.
Offer your help and sympathy. Be their shoulder to cry or vent on. Try to avoid being that person who tells them how everything happens for a reason, and they should change their mindset. Know your boundaries because they’re really important.
If you keep waking up with a smile during these difficult times, allow yourself to do that, and cherish your positive energy. The world is definitely going to need it.