How to get back to life after being sick

Here are a few tips that I used to help me get back on track and feel like myself again. 1. Don't sit down 2. Plan the night before 3. Find a balance between boring and fun 4. Netflix Multitasking 5. Go slow and don't stop

How to get back to life after being sick
Photo by Kelly Sikkema / Unsplash

This winter has seen a lot of illnesses going around and I recently came down with the flu. I managed to keep my spirits up the first few days I was unwell, taking the time off work to get a few projects done and watch some new shows on Netflix. By the end of the week, Netflix started getting old and I was so keen to make plans with people after being in isolation! Then the flu caused a secondary ear infection and I got a perforated ear drum (would not recommend it...) which had me feeling horrible for another whole week!

I have now discovered that two weeks is enough time to have your comfort zone shrink to basically going from the couch to the kitchen and back to the couch again. It can be really hard to get back into life again and restart all the positive habits that you had built up when the couch has become your new home.

Tips for getting back on track

Here are a few tips that I used to help me get back on track and feel like myself again.

1. Don’t sit down!

This is a really practical and easy tip. After you finish work for the day, try not to sit down. I find that if I sit down and start watching some YouTube or an episode of Netflix with dinner, my night becomes completely absorbed by this and nothing else. But if I avoid sitting down for the first half of the night and instead look at my to-do list and try to get a few things ticked off, I feel a lot better once I finally do decide to rest for the night.

2. Plan the night before

I have found that if I haven’t planned the tasks or activities I want to do after work, mindless scrolling usually fills the gap. It doesn’t take any decision processing power to open up social media, my autopilot does it automatically. An easy way to avoid this is to not leave a gap for it to fill. Instead, use the night before or the morning to plan a few things you want to do on your day off or in the evening after work.

3. Find a balance between boring and fun

If you plan the night before and only put hard and boring tasks on your to-do list, you’re less likely to want to do any of them. I find if I have only unpleasant things on my list, social media becomes a lot more enticing. I have found it helps to find a balance between tasks that aren’t so fun, and tasks that you’re looking forward to. Tonight after work I am going to vacuum the house, send off that email to my bank, have a bubble bath and start working on that drawing for my friend while I have Netflix on in the background.

4. Netflix Multitasking

Having Netflix on in the background while I’m doing other things is one of my favourite new hacks. It’s not that watching Netflix is inherently bad. I just find when I have been watching it on autopilot for a while, I don’t feel great. So finding things I can do whilst casually watching Netflix is a great way I can feel more productive whilst also catching up on some shows. Some activities I have done whilst multitasking have been drawing, sorting photos on my computer, or entering receipts into my tax spreadsheet. Pick any task that is fairly low stakes and repetitive that doesn't need your full attention.

5. Go slow and don’t stop

This tip is another super helpful practical tip that is easy to implement, similar to don’t sit down. You do exactly what it says, go slow doing the things you need to get done, but just don’t stop. You can go as slow as you like, there are no awards for getting things done fast, just try to keep moving to gain some momentum.

Hopefully, these tips are useful for you next time you find yourself in a bit of a rut and want to feel more on top of things. Try picking one or two of these tips and I hope that they help to get you back to living your best life.