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17 Small Silver Linings to Help You Feel Better About Quarantine

Even in the darkest times, there's always a silver lining.

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Young woman using a laptop to connect with her friends and parents during quarantineFilippoBacci/Getty Images

The new normal

It’s hard to think of life as “before COVID-19” and “after COVID-19.” Coronavirus has upended lives and forced millions of Canadians and people around the world out of jobs, out of apartments, and out of routines that defined their normal everyday existence. As we care for loved ones and friends around the world and try to make the best of this experience, we can take comfort in knowing we’re all in this together. Here are just a few things to help you find the silver lining in this impossible situation.

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Mom squeezing hand sanitizer onto her littler daughter’s handsImages By Tang Ming Tung/Getty Images

Realizing that we’re all in this together

It’s tempting to think that you are alone during this worldwide epidemic and no one else will understand how you feel. However, there are millions of people in Canada and around the world who have lost their jobs, and many people who themselves have had COVID-19 or have loved ones who have been affected by COVID-19. The novel coronavirus has affected people on every continent except Antarctica, and that means it’s something relatable that everyone around the world can talk about and know. This man had coronavirus and survived—here’s what he wants you to know.

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Young woman outdoors on sunny day, head back, eyes closedZenShui/Matthieu Spohn/Getty Images

Being thankful for the little things

When was the last time you were thankful you were able to open the front door of your home, step outside, and breathe in the fresh air? When was the last time you were thankful to give your family members and friends a hug? What about that time you went to a favourite restaurant to celebrate a friend’s birthday? There are many small things to be thankful for—including these wonderful things that will never be cancelled.

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Tablet is the best for video chat with familyJasmin Merdan/Getty Images

Taking the time to have video calls with friends and family

What was once a weekly catch-up happy hour with friends at a favourite local bar has turned into a weekly catch-up happy hour with friends… At home. You’re starting to realize that you don’t need to be out somewhere doing something to enjoy the company of family and friends. Simply being in their presence, albeit virtually, is enough. Here are 60 heartwarming best friend quotes that will make you want to call your BFF.

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Female Student Reading A Book In Her KitchenHinterhaus Productions/Getty Images

Picking up that book you’ve been meaning to read on your bookshelf

How many times over the years have you wandered through the aisles of favourite bookstores, picked out a few new books to read, and then never read them? No need to feel guilty—now is the perfect time to read the books you forgot all about from your bookshelf and reconnect with those characters from your new favourite story.

Want to lose yourself in long read? Check out this collection of gripping Drama in Real Life stories from the pages of Reader’s Digest Canada.

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Banana bread and cup of coffeeWestend61/Getty Images

Trying out that banana bread recipe you’ve been meaning to try

Now is the perfect time to cook some of your favourite comfort foods or try out some new recipes. Running low on ingredients? No problem! Try your hand at these easy cake recipes you can make when your cupboards are bare, or these three-ingredient recipes that don’t require a trip to the grocery store.

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Mother assisting daughter in writing homework on table while sitting against wall at homeMaskot/Getty Images

Spending more time with your kids and family

While working from home may not sound like the ideal scenario, there are silver linings, like spending more time with your family and, if you’re a parent, with your kids. Since schools have resorted to online learning, parents have an unprecendented opportunity to spend quality time with their children. However, while it’s difficult to balance the stress of both a full-time job and schoolwork, it’s important to work together during this time. These working from home tips can help.

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An active senior woman with a dog at home, resting.Halfpoint Images/Getty Images

Spending more time with your pet

It’s always heartbreaking to leave your dog or cat at home while you head off to work, but now that schools, universities, and most workspaces have closed down, you’re able to spend more quality time with your four-legged friends. That means more cuddles with your cat, longer walks with your dog, and the knowledge that while you may still be figuring out your “new normal,” your pet will always be by your side. Every fur-parent will appreciate these heartwarming dog quotes and cat quotes.

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Back view woman in backlight standing at the window at home looking outWestend61/Getty Images

Being grateful to be alive

Have you ever looked out of your window and noticed how the tree branches sway in the wind? What about the moment when sunlight streams inside through the window? Or, if you’re living with your partner, have you ever told them how much you enjoy their company? You’ve likely overlooked so many things before the pandemic, but now there’s so much time available, it’s good to slow down and be grateful to be a part of the world around you.

Need to cultivate an attitude of gratitude? Here are three ways to become a more thankful person.

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Watching Netflix On iPadFuture Publishing/Getty Images

Finishing that Netflix series you’ve been meaning to watch

Months ago, with a packed schedule, you probably didn’t have enough time to watch a single episode of a favourite TV show a night, let alone finish that series everyone has recommended you watch (but haven’t). Now that bars, restaurants, and life as you know it has come to a halt, there’s suddenly more time available. Don’t know where to start? Here are the best movies on Netflix Canada, according to Rotten Tomatoes.

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Mature man sitting on couch at home reading letterWestend61/Getty Images

Figuring out how snail mail works to send cards to friends and family

It’s hard to keep in touch with friends and family who live far away. Even friends who live a few blocks away in a city or a short drive away in a suburb can feel as though they’re a world apart. However, there is still a means of reaching out physically in the age of social distancing: snail mail. Talking on the phone is great, but writing letters and sending them through Canada Post is physical connection you can share with loved ones.

Our experts answer: Should you be disinfecting your mail?

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Black man drinking tea and reading on bedGranger Wootz/Getty Images

Not doing anything at all

In less than a few months, the entire world has changed, and you might feel as though you’re stuck in an alternate reality. In this challenging period, taking time for yourself is essential. If that means taking a sick day from working from home, going on a long walk for fresh air, or taking a personal spa day at home, then so be it. Your health is crucial in this period, and when everything beyond your control seems uncertain, you can at least take some comfort in knowing that you can make time for yourself, too.

Find out how this therapist is staying sane in self-quarantine.

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Father with his little son working from homeWestend61/Getty Images

Not having to deal with your rush-hour commute

Instead of waking up in a panic after hitting the snooze button one too many times, you can take some time to relax now that your commute is the distance from your bed to your desk, couch or kitchen table. If you’re trying to keep to the same schedule you had before working from home, you’re able to fill this time by making a proper breakfast, brewing a cup of coffee (avoid these coffee brewing mistakes!), or even taking a few minutes out of your day to meditate. Find out the surprising benefits of daily meditation.

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Portrait of senior man with trumpetMoMo Productions/Getty Images

Picking up that old hobby you forgot you loved

Think back to your childhood and recall anything that made you happy, including any hobbies you had but ultimately dropped because there wasn’t enough time. Grab that dusty guitar case from the attic, and bring out the old watercolour set. It’s the perfect time to get reacquainted with your old passions!

Find out more things to do when your whole life gets cancelled.

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Senior couple looking at photosThanasis Zovoilis/Getty Images

Go through your old photo albums

What better time to sift through photos of your family’s milestones? Take inspiration from your completed photo albums, and use your new-found spare time to organize all of those loose photos into chronological order before adding them to the collection. Save a few favourites for special frames to put on display.

On a mission to de-clutter? These brilliant home organizing hacks will come in handy.

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Small Business Owner Affected by COVID-19RichLegg/Getty Images

Do your part to support amazing small businesses

Have you ever told your favourite hairstylist why they’re your favourite? Now is the time to reach out and send a note to express your thanks to small business owners for all the work they’ve done, and to let them know you’re thinking of them even though you can’t give them your business at the moment. Find out more things you can still do to support your favourite small businesses.

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Maskot/Getty Images

Taking the time to clean your space

Now that you’re spending so much time at home, you’re able to look at your home in a new light and see it a bit more objectively. Should your desk be moved to the other side of the room? Could that big empty wall use the framed picture that’s been gathering dust in the back of the closet? What about a new coat of paint for the living room? Check out more indoor DIY projects that are perfect for self-quarantine.

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Woman reading from her smart phone in bed, smilingCarlina Teteris/Getty Images

Catch up with an acquaintance and get to know people you normally wouldn’t

Not one for small talk? You’re in luck—we all share the pandemic in common, so there’s no shortage of conversation starters. This is an excellent time to reach out to colleagues you don’t know that well but would like to, family members you haven’t talked to for ages, and friends you’ve fallen out of touch with. Take the time to send a text, or set a date for a video chat. Next, check out 40+ things you should do for yourself in quarantine.

Reader's Digest
Originally Published on Reader's Digest