How I Let Quarantine Change My Daily Routine For the Better; and How You Can Too

Thursday, April 23

By Ella Landers

Having been quarantined for more than a month now, with the end still unsure, it's on most people's minds fairly often. With an abundance of posts about it on most social media, it seems to be all anyone can talk about. A common theme among these posts is spending this time productively: working out, learning a new skill, etc. However, for many, struggling to keep up with work and school and the overall stress of the situation makes it hard to know where to begin. 

I wanted to improve my life in some ways during the long break at home. I worked hard to stay present in my college work, keep in touch with my friends, and spend time with my family (bonus points if you're able to mantain a positive relationship with your family while staying at home with them all day every day!)  

I started to question what I had really been doing for the past few weeks when I saw my friend's snapchat stories working out everyday. She kept her followers updated on her progress, losing about 10 pounds and building up some muscle. I watched these, wondering why I couldn't bring myself to do that, wondering why I wasn't spending my time better. It was hard seeing her and numerous others post about their expereriences with the quarantine and how they completely flipped their life around.

Here's the thing: they don't matter at all. 

Sure, good for them! It matters to them, and they got something awesome done. But it's incredibly important to remember to focus on yourself and what YOU can affect, rather than comparing your success to others. Don't let someone else's feats matter too much to you. Don't become overly jealous or upset at yourself for not being the same. In your world, let your success matter rather than dwindling it down when placed next to someone else's. A win in your book maybe isn't a win in someone else's, and that's okay. It's still a win! You don't have the same experiences, memories, or lifestyle. 

When I really began to realize this, and let myself become less resentful at everyone else's actions, I pushed myself to be happy with what I was doing. I wanted to continue to be proud of myself, which led to a new challenge for me. Several mornings a week I worked on waking up before 8 and running 4-5 miles. As an active hater of running, this was big for me-this was my win. If I compared it with some of the online posts I had been seeing, I'm sure I would've let the few miles I ran turn into something measly, and nothing to be proud of. But I didn't-I focused on myself and what I could affect, and I let this be a success.

How did I let the quarantine change my daily routine? Well, I pushed myself to do something I wanted to do. I didn't lose almost 10 pounds, I didn't learn a new language or read 50 books-but I didn't let these wins and success stories of other people affect mine. I had a win- and you can too. Just remember: focus on only what you can affect. A win in your book is still a win, no matter what! 


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