Whatever our personal reality, there comes a time when it is necessary to establish a containment barrier.
Written and verified by the psychologist GetPersonalGrowth.
Last update: 15 November 2021
Staying indoors all day due to quarantine does not mean always being available. We need time to disconnect, not only from the efforts of smart working, but also from messages and video calls. Setting limits during quarantine is actually very healthy.
Telework keeps us busy, on average, ten hours a day. If we add messages and video calls to this, it is normal to feel saturated at the end of the day. The secret, it seems ironic, is sometimes being able to establish boundaries in confinement.
Jane Wilde Hawking wrote in her book Towards infinity. The true story of Jane and Stephen Hawking that when we struggle against fate, the only thing that matters is to protect our survival. A very suitable tip in the current context.
However, within these survival capsules that are our homes, there is another dimension to safeguard: well-being. In these weeks of forced isolation we have lived and learned a lot. Each of us is managing this situation as we can, more or less effectively.
Someone is finding themselves thanks to a slower, more intimate and relaxed life. Others are struggling with anxiety. Whatever our personal reality, there comes a time when it is necessary to establish a containment barrier.
Learning to set boundaries during quarantine is a healthy gesture
We have now learned that focusing on assertiveness and learning to set limits in certain contexts guarantees us peace and mental balance. But who would have thought they would have to apply this principle in a quarantine context? It all seems very strange.
Isolated for most of the day, it is a pleasure to rediscover our loved ones thanks to technology. We also thought that teleworking equated to a better quality of life; finally we decide the office hours, reconciling it with family commitments.
Those who have ventured into this new scenario, however, may have discovered that staying at home is not that easy. This is a new situation that we must learn to calibrate. Let's see how to do it.
Teleworking and distance learning: tools to improve
According to the data provided by the telecommunication service operators, the connection peak begins at 9 am. It's the time when everyone checks their email.
On average, the days in agile work mode lengthened to ten hours, instead of eight. Even more surprising, many have set part of their working hours between midnight and three in the morning.
The reason is simple: it is difficult to concentrate during the day. For some, all that remains is to work when the children are asleep.
On the other hand, distance learning has shown gaps and difficulties. In some cases, students have to tackle exercises and topics to study without receiving explanations. Furthermore, the evaluation systems are not accurate. And add to this the technological factor: not all children have a computer at their disposal.
Setting limits during quarantine means being able to organize. Good telecommuting time management not only increases productivity, it saves us from stress. In the same way, as far as children are concerned, it is necessary to understand the limit between what can and cannot be achieved through e-learning.
In many cases, for parents, the children's school represents an additional load. This is a problem to be considered and solved.
Staying at home does not mean always being available
Setting limits during quarantine means making it clear that we are not always available.
Sometimes, we don't really want to have that chat with Zoom, Skype or WhatsApp, and not because we don't love the person who offers it to us. In some moments, we simply need to immerse ourselves in reading a book or do nothing. We need to calm our minds.
Each of us has different rhythms and needs. Often, at the end of the day, we realize that we have spent hours between messages and phone calls. All this is positive, it is a small lifeline in this moment of crisis, but we also need rest, time for ourselves. Setting a series of limits during the quarantine, therefore, is a gesture that is good for our health.
Establish boundaries during quarantine: mental boundaries are also necessary
Establishing a limit also involves self-control. Therefore, it is not just a question of raising barriers against the outside world by reducing, for example, the amount of information to be received.
In addition to managing the time to devote to family and friends better, agreeing on the best time for video calls, we also need to establish mental limits.
What does it mean to set a mental limit? It means, for example, blocking excessive worries. Wellness means being assertive towards others, of course, but also towards ourselves, controlling what is in our hands.
True, there are things beyond our control, which we face every day with uncertainty and fear. We must, however, put a stop to the mind that anticipates events that have not yet happened, to the extreme pessimism that intensifies the anxiety.
Be clear, taking care of our inner universe is as important as having control over the outer world. Well-being is found in balance, in the ability to decide a limit, to understand what we need from time to time. Let's work on this aspect.