Community • 13 Apr 2020
6 Tips for Teens
Stay at Home – 6 Tips for Teens
(1) Use your social media skills for good
If you have a relative, family friend or neighbor that might not be as tech-savvy as you, give them a call and help them set up video chats, multi-person calls, messaging apps, etc., so that they can stay connected to their loved ones. Have a favorite funny video channel or podcast you like? Share that with them, too!
(2) Give your eyes a break
You’re probably spending more time on your phone, tablet or computer lately because of all the changes with school, etc., but remember: it’s putting a lot more demand on your eyes with the extra screen time. Aim to spend a few hours each day (while you’re awake) “Screen Free”. You can still listen to music or a podcast, but just give your eyes & brain a break from all of the light and fast movement of the screen. Make sure any device you’re using has a blue light filter turned on (many have this built-in) or see if you can download one if not.
(3) Take charge in the kitchen
Do you have a favorite meal you’ve been craving, or is there someone on social media you follow that is always posting delicious recipes? Why not make them! See what you can find in your pantry & fridge and, if there are items you need from the store, coordinate when might be the best & safest time to get them with whomever is doing the grocery store trips in your home. Put your own twist on the recipes or even challenge yourself to see what you can make with what’s available at home.
(4) Let it out!
This is a strange and generally scary time for a lot of people – know that is 100% OK for you to feel afraid, confused, anxious or even angry about the changes happening with school, work and your community. Try to find ways to express these emotions outwardly, because anything that you let “boil up” inside can have negative impacts on your immune system. Try journaling (handwriting with pen & paper), writing feelings down and then ripping them up, yelling into a pillow, having a quick singing/dancing party to your favorite song, scribbling on paper, channeling your emotions into a workout and talking to your family & friends about how you’re feeling – you are not alone in this! There are also some great resources for online therapist services that may offer another way for you to speak with someone about how you’re feeling, such as TalkSpace & Better Health.
(5) Be smart about going outdoors
It is very important to observe social distancing (minimum 6 ft apart from others) to help reduce the spread of the virus, but people seem to forget sometimes that you need to think about WHO you’re around and not just how far away you are from them – please only spend time around those that you live with; any time you add someone new to your routine, you are introducing any exposure they might have had into your space and ultimately back to your family when you go home. This is not the time to plan a meet up at a park or to walk around your favorite store together. This doesn’t mean you can’t spend time outdoors! Being out in nature has incredible benefits for your mood & energy but please practice distancing if you’re out for a walk/run and, if you’re not going out alone, make sure it’s with someone you live with. Respect any signs or barriers put up around parks, trails, playgrounds & beaches by your local authorities.
(6) Stay alert, stay safe!
With everything that’s going on, there are a lot more alerts coming in on the news, other media apps and texts from family & friends – always make sure you have your phone set to drive/do-not-disturb mode when driving and remember to NEVER text & drive, scroll social media & drive, film videos while driving, etc. You have plenty of time to do that once you’re safely at home!
Rowena Daly, ND
Susan Samueli Integrative Health Institute