Covid 19 & Social Distancing: 6 Tips to Avoid Relationship Problems
- Make time for ‘alone time’
Alone time every day is key. Take time to be alone whether that is to just breathe, text with a friend, take a nap, read…whatever. The important thing is to take time to be with you, yourself, and just you.
Try to organise timing with your partner, this way, when you’re having your alone time, your partner can have theirs, too. You both need time apart from each other to refresh which is perfectly natural.
- Create a timetable
Many people are struggling to keep a normal schedule right now, which is unfortunate because most of us rely on schedules for a sense of stability and even to combat things like anxiety and depression.
You could sit down together and come up with a rough schedule to add some structure and make things feel a little more normal. This is particularly helpful for couples navigating working from home together for the first time, or being around each other a lot more than usual. You can also use this time to set some general ground rules about noise or interruptions when working.
- Get fresh air
Yes, we’re being told to stay inside our homes, but we can take one walk a day. Going outside will help your well-being and help you not explode at your partner when things get tense.
Getting outside is great for your mental health. walks outside in nature can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression — so if you live nearby a park or nature trail, take advantage of it!
As humans we need fresh air. Just keep the 2 metre (7-8 feet) rule in mind in order to stay away from those respiratory droplets. They can be similar to an aerosol spray when sprayed and that’s why we’re all trying so hard to avoid them.
- Stay in touch with the outside world
Unfortunately, during this time, it’s not possible (well, possible but very, very ill advised — PLEASE don’t do it unless absolutely necessary) to go out and see other friends and family members. The whole point of social distancing is to avoid the spreading of germs, and that only works when we all stay home. But, thanks to social media and technology, there are plenty of other ways to communicate with others. Don’t neglect relationships with friends and loved ones, who are not your partner.
Making sure that you have one to two calls, minimum, per day with other people is helpful to your mental health and overall sanity.
Schedule video chats or phone calls with at least one friend or family member per day. It’s important to maintain your other relationships, even while you’re primarily with your partner.”
- Learn how to communicate better
Communication is key in relationships all the time, but when you are quarantined together 24/7, communication is even more important.
Part of this is being empathetic, and not engaging in minimizing, name calling, or shaming. We’re all going to lose it for what feels like ‘no reason,’ we’re going to be rude or not the best version of ourselves — and that’s okay. We need to give ourselves and our partner(s) grace.
- Use the time to your advantage
If you’re one of those couples who lives together but barely ever sees each other due to different life-styles or social lives, now’s the time to reconnect. Although it’s not ideal to be “trapped” at home, you can still make the most of it and do fun things with your partner.
Here are six ideas;
- Play games together but not a game where one of you is much stronger in it than the other
- Spend extra time learning new things about each other
- Make lists of things you’ve been wanting to do together; circle the ones you can do at home
- Have sex and re-learn each other’s bodies
- Give each other massages
- Redecorate, clean, and make your home look amazing
This is an extreme situation and therefore extreme behaviour might surface. Now is a time when the world — and your partner — needs more love than ever. Everything is so uncertain and stressful right now, but if you follow these tips and actively work on being the best partner you can be, you can be certain that being quarantined together you won’t destroy your relationship. Just think — it might actually bring you closer!