Lay Down Some Household Ground Rules
Come up with a game plan for how the day will go, designated certain hours for using the kitchen, working and/or spending time alone, and period of time when you’ll spend time together.
Practice Even More Patience
Stress levels are higher than usual for all the reasons we’ve outlined above. Practicing patience becomes increasingly difficult, and therefore all the more important.
“In addition, give each other space to help calm down one’s mind and senses. We are social beings, but when we are frustrated and feeling overwhelmed, we sometimes need to stay alone for a while.”
Avoid Common Communication Pitfalls
Bickering is inevitable but can easily spiral into all-out brawls when confined to a small space without anywhere to go. In some cases, arguments might even be born out of boredom. When an argument does occur, make sure to avoid common communication pitfalls, which include raising your voice, spending too much time complaining instead of problem-solving, using sweeping generalizations (you always, you never), name-calling, and not listening.
Try to Be Quieter in General
Being respectful of people’s space also means not infringing on their eardrums — a surefire way to incite frustration when you’re sharing closed and close quarters. This is true whether quarantined or not, but becomes increasingly important when spending 24/7 with someone and even more true if each party is trying to get work done.
Be Helpful Around the House
Chores still pile up even when we’re spending time at home. In some cases, there are even more tasks to tackle, such as making meals, doing the dishes, taking out the trash, and general tidying. Household work is often a source of bickering whether quarantined or not, but having to spend more time around clutter and mess can fuel the fire.
Do Spend Purposeful Time Together
In addition to setting aside time to spend apart, it’s important to also allocate time to spend intentionally together. Maybe it’s a few hours at the end of the day and/or a midday lunch break.
A Word From Verywell
Experiencing stress and anxiety in uncertain times is normal. Being deliberate about helping others and nurturing your relationships can help, and the above advice is a great place to start. That said, it’s also important to make sure you’re taking care of yourself by practicing self-care and reaching out to friends, family, and professionals as needed.