Make Coronavirus Social Distancing Regime a Breeze With Those Simple Hacks

article by Maria Perinic
April 01, 2020
More than 1.5 billion people have been asked or ordered to stay at home, that’s one-fifth of the world’s population due to the severity of the coronavirus. For most of those that get infected, coronavirus will be a mild illness, but for some, it has proven deadly.
The problem with COVID-19 is that it is more infectious than the regular flu, and you can carry the virus without having symptoms which is why we are being urged to stay at home. Now is the time to relax and truly connect with ourselves, but sometimes that is easier said than done. Keep reading to find out what social distancing is and explore some genius hacks that will make home isolation that much easier.

What is Social Distancing?

Social distancing measures include steps that will reduce the transmission of coronavirus and reduce social interaction between people. They include:

  • Avoiding contact with people showing symptoms of COVID-19 like continuous coughing and high temperatures
  • Avoiding public transport when possible
  • Working from home
  • Avoiding any gatherings in public spaces including restaurants, cafes, parks and other closed spaces where people gather
  • Avoiding contact with friends and family, but keeping in contact via remote technology like cell phones, internet, and social media
  • Using telephone services in order to contact your doctor or other essential services

Home isolation can be quite a shock to your system, especially if you don’t normally work from home or generally lead a social and active lifestyle. For many, being cooped up at home for more than a few days is a nightmare. Luckily, there are some hacks that you can explore which will make your home quarantine experience a breeze.

Explore a More Balanced Diet

Working in an office for the better part of a day means that you’re normally limited when it comes to choosing quality meals on a daily basis. Now, as you’re restricted to home isolation, you can explore new flavors in the kitchen as well as look into incorporating ingredients that will help you keep your immune system strong.

While a balanced diet doesn’t necessarily make you 100% immune to viruses and illnesses it will definitely ensure that you get over said illnesses quicker and easier. It also means that you will be able to keep your loved safe from serious health implications from coronavirus.

In saying that, many places are already in lockdown, and shopping centers around the country have been or are likely to close in the foreseeable future, leaving just grocery stores open for people to purchase food.

Viral images of hundreds of people lining up outside of Costco stores around the United States have shown how panic buying impacts the community with shelves being emptied around the nation.

One of the best ways to avoid packed grocery store crowds, and comply with new social distancing measures is to invest in a meal delivery subscription. Think about it, there is no need to worry about braving the crowds or whether you might pick up a nasty bug while purchasing your food for the next few weeks.

You can choose from two types of meal delivery services.

One will ensure that you are delivered all the needed fresh ingredients for you to prepare your meals at home. This can take as little as twenty to thirty minutes per meal and means that you can interact with those at home, especially your children.

On the other hand, you can choose from heat and eat meals which are seen as more convenient under normal circumstances.

There are additional benefits that you can experience when subscribing to a meal delivery service.

As meal delivery services allow you to regulate portion-sized, you will be able to eliminate food waste. This is especially important as each year in the United States around 30-40% of food that is grown for consumption goes uneaten. The fact that your meals are pre-portioned means that you can control your food intake better and it also spares you having to throw out leftovers.

One of the biggest parts of deciding to eat a healthy, balanced diet is the challenge of not knowing what to eat. A meal plan company is usually guided with nutrition experts which will free you of the task of curating meal plans for yourself and your family. Additionally, there are plenty available that cater to different diets.

A misconception when it comes to meal delivery services is that they are far more expensive than the cost of cooking for yourself. Looking at the long-term impact, you will be saving money on unnecessary ingredients as well as traveling to the store.

With so many benefits, the biggest one being that you don’t have to make trips to the grocery store during this time of home quarantine there is no better time than now to find out which meal plan delivery service works best for you. We have rounded up three of our favorites to save you time on research.

Another thing to consider is the effect of your daily nutrition on your mental vitality. Unbalanced nutrition in conjunction with the consumption of junk food may increase the social isolation side effects like anxiety & depression.

  • Home Chef

This meal kit delivery company’s mantra is about making home cooking simple whilst at the same time bringing people together at the dinner table. This is achieved by creating easy to follow recipes that often put a twist on traditional favorites. It caters to singles, couples, families, and seniors that are often pressed for time, but still want to experience delicious home-cooked meals.

Home chef’s meals are made in thirty minutes or less and allow for various cooking skill levels. There are no cancelation fees and users are able to skip weeks whenever they please. Various meal plans include Customize It where you can swap, double or upgrade the amount of protein in your meals, Low Calorie, Low Carb, Fresh and Easy, and Culinary Collection. Fresh and Easy is the newest plan where meals are designed to be cooked in 15 minutes or less, and Culinary Collection involves premium ingredients as well as some advanced techniques.

There are dinner servings priced at $9.99 and lunch servings that cost $7.99 with free shipping for orders over $49.

Read our in-depth review to find out more.

  • Sun Basket

If you are worried that subscribing to a meal delivery company means that you will have below-par ingredients, worry no more. Sun Basket works with more than 100 farms in order to supply customers with the best available fruit and vegetables on the market. When it comes to their meat products, Sun Basket only uses responsibly raised poultry, meats, and sustainably sourced seafood.

This organic food delivery company has a new-age flare and caters to those following a specific diet including paleo, gluten-free, vegan, Mediterranean or lean and clean. You can make your choice from at least 18 weekly meals and follow simple recipes that will see you enjoying your meal within thirty minutes or less. You can choose from two people plan or a family plan and enjoy recipes such as Turkey and spinach sliders with sweet potato “buns” or Salmon with lemon-oregano sauce and artichoke-fregola pilaf.

Meals cost between $10.99-$12.99 per serving, and shipping costs $6.99, with the first shipment free.

Read our in-depth review to find out more.

Freshly is one of those meal delivery companies that sees all your meals prepared by an expert chef. All you have to do is simply take the meal out of your refrigerator, throw it into the microwave and it will be ready in under five minutes. Just like other meal delivery plans, your meals will arrive on a specific day during the week in an iced box. You can either put them in the refrigerator meaning you need to consume them within a few days or place them into the freezer for storage.

This is an excellent choice for those that usually eat out a lot, as you can get four, six, nine or twelve meals delivered to your door on a weekly basis. Meals start at just $7.99 and you can expect to enjoy recipes such as buffalo chicken, Mexican-style shredded beef, and Sicilian-style chicken parm.

When it comes to various dietary preferences, Freshly says,

“We accommodate a variety of dietary preferences, and always offer an entire gluten– and peanut-free menu. As a customer, you can set your own dietary preferences and easily find the meals that work for you. If you’re unable to place an order that fits your preferences now, be sure to check back frequently as we’re always adding new and exciting dishes. On average, our weekly rotation of 30+ dishes includes:

Under 500 calories: 20+ meals

Under 35 grams of carbs: 8–10 meals

Dairy-free: 8–10 meals”

Read our in-depth review to find out more

Explore a More Balanced Diet

Start Streaming Your Favorite Shows While In Home-Isolation

If you have been in home isolation or are just starting to, you will likely be taking a growing part in the homebody economy.

“The homebody economy often refers to booming on-demand streaming services, online shopping, food delivery, online education, working from home and gaming apps that can satisfy people’s demand in the comfort of their own homes.”

With an increasing amount of free time, there is no time like the present to catch up on your favorite shows. Streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, HBO Now, and Hulu are home to some of your favorite shows and movies. So if you’ve been looking forward to watching the Mandalorian, but haven’t had to, you are now in the perfect situation to do it.

The problem with many of these streaming platforms is that they are geographically restricted. If you love watching a particular TV show from the UK, you probably won’t have access to it using regular channels. If you like to torrent your favorite movies and shows, you should be aware that there are legal problems with this and by increasing your torrenting activity, you could end up with a hefty fine.

The answer to getting around these issues is to invest in a Virtual Private Network (VPN). This handy online tool is excellent in protecting your privacy online as it encrypts your online data sending it through to another server in a different location and therefore masking your IP address.

The benefits of using a VPN include saving money when making online purchases, avoiding throttling from your Internet Service Provider (ISP), having a faster internet connection, and bypassing government, third-party and ISP monitoring. With so many people working from home, it allows you the confidence that your company’s details and data will not be hacked from outside sources. This has resulted in a surge of VPN use around the world.

“Growth in VPN usage has been pushed by a number of governments around the world either encouraging people to work from home if they can, or making it effectively mandatory to do so in countries that are in coronavirus lockdown.

The Netherlands has seen the biggest growth in employee business VPN usage, with the number of users surging by 240%. That’s followed by Austria and Canada, which have seen VPN usage grow by 208% and 206% respectively.

France, Belgium, and Denmark have also seen significant spikes in business VPN usage, with all three countries experiencing growth of between 180% and 190%, while in Spain, the use of NordVPN Teams business services has grown by 95%.

Both the US and the UK have also seen a rise in VPN usage, but not by as much – the growth in the two countries currently stands at 66% and 48% respectively.”

If you want to stream a particular show, but cannot due to your location, all you need to do is purchase a VPN subscription and change your location to a server in that country.

One of, if not the best VPN service is ExpressVPN. It has more than 3,000 servers around 160 locations around the world and is compatible with all major platforms like Windows, Mac, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Android, iOS, Windows Phone, and Amazon Kindle Fire.

The good news about ExpressVPN is that it is based in the British Virgin Islands, which means that your online identity remains anonymous.

“We do not collect logs of your activity, including no logging of browsing history, traffic destination, data content, or DNS queries. We also never store connection logs, meaning no logs of your IP address, your outgoing VPN IP address, connection timestamp, or session duration.”

Security is excellent as ExpressVPN has military-grade encryption, OpenVPN, DNS leak blocking, five-party DNS, IPV6 leak blocking, webRTC leak blocking, as well as a Network Lock. It should only take a couple of minutes to set up, but if you have any trouble you can contact support via the online chat which is available 24/7.

You can enjoy five simultaneous connections, guaranteed uptime of 99.9% and a thirty-day money-back guarantee.

Want to know more about ExpressVPN? Find out everything you need to know in our detailed review.

Another excellent choice for your VPN service provider is Surfshark. Although this VPN hasn’t been around as long as some of its competitors it has sure caught up, providing users with over 1,050 servers in 61 countries around the world. Just like ExpressVPN, Surfshark has jurisdiction in the British Virgin Islands and will not “collect IP addresses, browsing history, session information, used bandwidth, connection time stamps, network traffic, and other similar data.”

Surfshark has excellent speeds as well as the ability to use unlimited simultaneous connections, which is very rare. You can connect to Netflix and other streaming servers without any issues, and there is a CleanWeb feature that ensures your devices are protected from malware and phishing attempts when your VPN is turned on.

There is military-grade protection as well as ample security protocols that will keep your connection secure. Additionally, Surfshark offers a kill switch that disables your internet connection should your VPN connection drop meaning you’re shielded all of the time.

Want to know more about Surfshark? Find out everything you need to know in our detailed review.

Start Streaming Your Favorite Shows While In Home-Isolation

Get Fit and Stay Fit During Home Quarantine

Keeping fit is one of the best ways to keep your immune system strong during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Staying in doesn’t mean you need to give up your fitness regime. Sure, you might not be able to frequent your gym anymore, but there are a ton of at-home exercise options that will keep you in top form.

Some of our favorite at-home workout apps include:

No matter what your preference, you will have your fitness routines covered, with some apps offering classes that are similar to what you would find at your group fitness class or gym. This way you won’t feel as though you’re straying too far from the norm.

Get Fit and Stay Fit During Home Quarantine

Get in the Zone With Meditation

Meditating is a brilliant way to pass the time while in home isolation. Take a moment to just breathe and practice deep, slow breathing. Another tip is to surround yourself with nature when you can. If you have a balcony, make sure to make your way there regularly to breathe in the fresh air.

Moving around in your home is also important. Whenever your body stops it begins to shut down which can result in depression, isolation, and sadness. Visualize things in your mind, such as walking around in a forest. Meditation has the ability to put you in a state where you make better decisions, and it will help you in feeling a little less hopeless.

‘Valerie Knopik, Ph.D. – Director of Research for Yoga Medicine, the Miller Professor of Human Development and Family Studies at Purdue University says, “when we practice mind-body techniques such as mindfulness, meditation, and focused intention tasks, we influence brain activity in regions that are involved in reducing psychological stress and increasing the parasympathetic response.  This can, over time and with practice, ease anxiety and increase mood.”’

Get in the Zone With Meditation

Stay Mentally Healthy

Remaining at home and practicing social distancing might see many people suffer a reactive form of anxiety and depression. It is important to look after your mental health either by getting online medical care or looking for an online mental therapist service.

There are some tips that you can follow which will help in keeping you from feeling uneasy and provide a sense of comfort.

Make sure to keep a routine. Whenever you’re unable to keep a routine, you feel a loss of self. So have that morning cup of coffee, read your book, and do a quick daily exercise routine just to keep your days regular. If you find yourself begin to overthink the situation about COVID-19, there are steps that will allow you to calm down a little.

“Whether you get on the worry train or not, Diana Winston recommends using the STOP acronym, a well-known mindfulness tool, to help calm yourself:

S: Stop. When you notice that you are feeling anxious and you need a moment: stop.

T: Take a breath. If you find yourself worrying about the future, bring yourself back to the present. Take a breath, pause, feel your feet on the ground.

O: Observe what is happening inside yourself. Does your stomach hurt? Is your heart racing? Ask yourself, “How am I right now?” Bring yourself back to the moment.

P: Proceed with more awareness of yourself and what will help you. Connecting with a friend, or having some daily quiet time outdoors, can help.”

Stay Mentally Healthy

Learn Something New

There are so many online courses running at the moment, so if you’ve been eyeing off that cooking, writing, or acting masterclass, why not take it? There are also loads of different museum tours that you and your family members can enjoy together. Why not take a tour of the Guggenheim Museum or the Louvre and see the Mona Lisa.

Virtual learning doesn’t have to stop there. Take your virtual adventure one step further and check out various nature walks around the US, take a graffiti tour through Argentina and Sweden or go on virtual dives with the New England Aquarium to see things like live feeds of the animals that live there.

With coronavirus taking over, there are free tours happening online all over the world. It includes the Frida Kahlo museum in Mexico City, the Met in New York City as well as the breathtaking Palace of Versailles. It should be noted that some of those free tours such as the Palace of Versailles are restricted to people from that particular country. The perfect way to get around those restrictions? A VPN.

Learn Something New

Conclusion

Social distancing has certainly put a spanner in the works in terms of our daily routines. This new reality that has a large part of the world’s population has seen people working from home dealing with various home quarantine restrictions.

This sudden change in our behavior can cause people to suffer from anxiety and be taxing on mental health. It is important to keep daily routines, connect with family using modern technology, and use this time to catch up on all our favorite home-based activities.