7 Tips for Staying Sane at Home—From an American Living in China

Just as things are getting better here in China, COVID-19 is really ramping up in America.

I can’t give you any more advice as to how to stay safe that you haven’t heard already (wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, don’t touch your face, avoid crowded places, etc…) but I do have some tips if you want to stay sane during the extensive amount of time you’ll probably be staying at home.

Here are 7 Ways to Maintain Sanity While Being Stuck at Home

1. Keep a good sleeping schedule.

Don’t let yourself waste away from oversleeping every day.

2. Set some productive goals you can accomplish at home.

Whether it be finally organizing your Christmas decorations in storage or cleaning the dreaded floor underneath the refrigerator. I’m sure we all can make a list.

3. Set some skills-based goals you can practice.

For me, I wanted to develop a pasta sauce that I’m proud of. I made several batches over several days, but I think I’m finally there.

4. Have some structure for the entertainment you consume.

With the countless hours you’ll be spending at home and the endless amount of content at our fingertips, it’s so easy to bounce from one thing to another and make a big soupy mess. Here are some examples to add a little organization:

-Take a good look at your bookshelf and pull 2 or 3 books you’d consider high-priority to read. Read em.

-Watch whatever movie you want but be sure to throw in a few feel-good movies in with the mix. There’s no shame in that.

5. Work Well

For the love of all things good in this world – if you are working from home be EXTRA productive during this time. Send the company you work for the message that working from home is a viable option for the future.

6. Start using hand lotion if you don’t already.

I’ve never had the need for hand lotion in the past, but because of the extensive handwashing, my hands have become crackly raw messes.

7. Above all else – don’t worry.

Worrying won’t change anything other than adding more grays to your head. Take all the precautions to stay healthy, don’t be stupid, you’re not “special” or invincible. Even if you’re young and healthy and highly unlikely to die from COVID-19, you can still spread it to others who CAN die from this thing.

This is a defensive game we’re playing. We must sacrifice a few things in order to starve out this pandemic.

My thoughts and prayers are with everyone. But, as I said, don’t let it get to your head. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to stay in your PJs all day without judgment, to develop a new skill you’ve always wanted to learn, to finally read that book you’ve been shelving for years, to grow closer to the ones you care about most, and to draw near to the Lord in a slower season.

Hang in there, everyone!

Josh Lamm
Josh Lamm is a Virginia native living in Chengdu, China with his wife, Caroline and their dog, Pinky. When he's not teaching kindergarteners, he loves to be outside, explore new things, and play video games.

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