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Dos And Don’ts Of Sheltering In Place


The world is on lock-down due to COVID-19. This has been the case for San Francisco for almost six weeks now and the end isn’t even in sight. Some people seem to just hop right in with the new normal and are getting along swimmingly. Then there are the rest of us! Here is a list of dos and don’ts while sheltering in place. See if you can pick just one or two to try out this week.

DO – maintain a morning routine

Get up, shower, make the bed, get dressed, brush your teeth, do your hair, make some coffee, eat breakfast, put on shoes, then start the day. Setting a morning routine allows for the mind to recognize some normalcy and signals the start to the day.

DON’T – expect perfection

Being stuck at home with a partner, family, children, parents, roommates, COVID buddies, pets, and such would wear down the most resolute among us. We as humans aren’t designed to operate this way – we are quite social creatures. So, don’t guilt and shame yourself if you are not functioning perfectly!

DO – keep work in its space

Physically set up an office space at home. If possible, make it outside of your bedroom. If that isn’t possible, make an effort to create some sort of actual work station wherever that can be (as in don’t use your bed or the couch). Once you are done with work for the day, close down the office. In order to keep work in its space mentally, consider a “commute” to and from work. This might be a walk around the block to signify a commute to work and a walk around the block to signify a commute home from work.

DON’T – make big changes

Now is NOT the time to get a puppy, break up, move, buy a car, etc. You are not alone with your frustration and anger over the lack of control with sheltering in place. This lack of control will often lead us to grasp for control wherever we can find it. However, making a long-term decision to combat a short-term problem might just leave you with a long-term problem.

DO – be kind and understanding

Energy, mood, motivation, and hopefulness changes constantly. Recognize and understand this will happen and, without judgement, just go with the flow. The lack of positive feelings will likely change in a bit so just ride the waves.

DON’T – watch too much news or social media

These days especially, news can be sensationalized, contradictory, and worrisome…and that’s on a good news day! Keeping the news on in the background as white noise can be taxing and upsetting to the psyche. Pick a source or two and once or twice a day to digest news. The stories are likely just recycled all day so don’t feel like you are missing anything. The same goes with social media. If your social media platform of choice is too news/opinion/judgmental heavy, it might be time for a break.

Lastly, if doing anything on this list feels like too much to handle right now, that’s ok. Just be gentle with yourself and that’s enough. <3