🗞 Growing indoors

Keep safe & have fun: Inside tips for life under lockdown

How are you doing? We know many of you, like us here at WoW!, are stuck indoors to stop the corona virus. You’re probably missing things about normal life.

So we’ve listened to people who know about living in isolation – like astronauts, sailors and adventurers.

Here, they offer seven ideas on how to keep well – and also things that will help you long after this COVID lockdown is over.

  1. Who? What? Where? When?

Getting up for school isn’t something we miss normally. But French astronaut Jean-François Clervoy says that up in space, where there isn’t really night and day and the crew spend months in a tiny box, a routine really helps so that everyone knows beforehand when and where everything will happen.

A timetable stops us getting on each other’s nerves.

French astronaut Jean-François Clervoy
2. Go with the flow

Don’t bother worrying about things you can’t change: François Gabart, who holds a record for sailing round the world alone, takes the weather as it comes and spends his weeks at sea travelling inside himself.

Let your thoughts wander free and enjoy the little positive things that come along.

Record-breaking sailor François Gabart
3. Keep fit!
Jessica Meir on the ISS

WoW! follows Jessica Meir, the American astronaut who has been on the International Space Station for more than 6 months. She beamed back to Earth her tips for working out when you can’t go out.

Exercise is important for not only our physical fitness but also for our mental wellbeing.

Jessica Meir, U.S. astronaut
4. Speak up!

Swiss doctor Bertrand Piccard spent 3 weeks squashed in with Englishman Brian Jones to make the first non-stop round-the-world flight in… a balloon! It was tense, but they couldn’t risk having a row. You must tell people how you feel, says Bertrand.

Don’t bottle things up. But if others bother you, don’t yell or say they’re wrong – just tell them calmly how it makes you feel.

Bertrand Piccard, Swiss doctor and balloon pioneer
5. Enjoy nature
The moon through trees

We’ve written before about listening to birdsong while we all stay indoors. British astronaut Helen Sharman says the strain of working in space was helped by watching planet Earth go by. Now she is stuck at home in London. Now she finds that looking out at trees blossoming also helps keep her calm.

I can open the window and feel the fresh air (which I couldn’t do in space…) and listen to the wind or the birds … You might think your view stays the same but it’s always changing.

Helen Sharman, British astronaut
6. Think of others

Matthieu Ricard is a French scientist who is also a Buddhist monk. He spends much of his time alone in the Himalaya mountains.

Use the peace and quiet to think about what really makes you happy – you may find you want to do more for other people.

Matthieu Ricard, scientist and monk
7. Me time!
Me time!

But don’t forget yourself! Find a quiet corner. Read a book. Make a drawing. Bake a cake. Sleep! Helen found another space tip works on Earth. In orbit, she had a tiny sleeping space where her crewmates wouldn’t bother her. Today, she says, she gets away from her family by sitting in a cupboard!

When I close the door, people know not to disturb me!

Helen Sharman, the first Briton in space

We hope you’re enjoying reading WoW! and listening to our podcasts. If we’re helping cheer you up, do think of passing on WoW! to a friend!

Alastair editor of WoW!

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