Are you also feeling bored, cranky, irritable, or lethargic sitting at home? Well, this condition is called “cabin fever” and due to the social distancing or self-quarantine in the wake of COVID-19, almost everyone is feeling it across the globe.
Cabin fever is a term used to describe the claustrophobia, irritability, restlessness that is experienced when a person or a group of people are stuck at an isolated location for a long period of time.
Historically, cabin fever came into existence roughly in the year 1900s when people were isolated in remote areas during extreme winter. It was necessary to stay indoors for many days and this made people feel trapped. A similar feeling is being experienced by our generation presently.
How do I know if I suffer from Cabin fever?
There is no way to know if you suffer from cabin fever or not because cabin fever is not a psychological condition as such. The symptoms that it makes you feel can be psychological. If you are experiencing cabin fever, your symptoms could be like:
- Restlessness - Lethargy - Sadness or depression - Trouble concentrating - Lack of patience- Food cravings - Decreased motivation - Social Isolation - Difficulty waking - Frequent napping
So, what do I do?
First and foremost, understand that it is extremely common to be feeling sad and dejected in the times of a pandemic.
Reproaching yourself of not having the optimism level of a monkey is destructive enough. Second, and most importantly, understand that you are not alone. There are many others out there (including me) who understand these feelings.
Cabin fever is not a psychological disorder, but a state of being that can make you feel irritated or restless. Here are a few ways in which you can beat it:
1. Stick to your eating and sleeping pattern
The worst thing you can do to yourself is to mess up with your eating and sleeping patterns. It is recommended that you get at least 6-8 hours of sleep (not more than that please) and eat at least 3 meals a day. This way your brain would still be following a set pattern and would not succumb to boredom or exhaustion.
2. Keep your mind active
Yes, Netflix and Prime are good sources of keeping your mind busy, but it also extremely essential for you to keep your mind active. You can play puzzles with your friends, solve crime mysterious online, or even read a book. An active mind would be more alert and would not fall into a state of delirium.
We understand that you might be feeling lethargic but persuade yourself to exercise for at least 20-30 minutes a day. You can even set a goal for yourself or team up with a friend to have a healthy challenge between the two of you.
Indeed it is one of the most difficult periods that the human civilization has seen in the past few decades. It is also true that you and I have been unprepared to deal with anything like this.
But, what is also true is that all of us have an innate desire to fight back and that’s what makes us special. The golden rule to fight cabin fever is to understand that these feelings are only temporary in nature and “they too shall pass”