Let’s be real, the past few days have been crazy. COVID- 19 has what seems like the whole world in a state or panic. Like many, you may be reading this wondering just how to wrap your head around everything and navigate COVID-19 both mentally and emotionally. There is concern over the impact that this outbreak will have politically, economically and socially. From my conversations with friends and family, one thing is clear. People are gripped with fear of the future. I don’t blame them. There is a general feeling that many people are in for a difficult ride once the dust settles. I know a lot of people are already having to make very difficult decisions and some are already experiencing significant loss. While I understand that there is justifiable reason for fear, I do not believe in living in fear. I do not believe in overwhelm or stress. These emotions will do nothing but make me feel stuck. I cannot promise that things are going to get easier, but I am committed to providing some tools to help you get navigate COVID-19 and through this season.
If you are feeling stuck or overwhelmed with everything, heres what I know in my heart- we are going to pull through this. In the past, I have written about trusting in God when going through difficulties. You can read more about that here.
Here are some things that I have been implementing and you can do too to take care of yourself mentally and emotionally.
- Don’t keep checking the news
Bad news sells. I saw somewhere someone said that as a society, we have an obsession with consuming and sharing bad news. Continuous consumption of the negative reports in the news will only serve to propagate the feelings of fear and anxiety that you may be feeling. Instead of tuning in for an update on COVID every hour, why not try checking for updates once a day. Perhaps it might be worthwhile to even do a social media or news cleanse. Also do not be afraid to tell people that you do not want to talk about COVID-19. What you focus on grows, so try not to focus on the negativity.
2. Make Money Moves
The first thought I had when there was talk about the impact this pandemic would have on our economy was that of saving. If you have not already started saving for an emergency fund, it is time to start. Create a budget and stick to it. Many of us have more time on our hands with working from home. That coupled with the surge in online stores offering promotions and discounts can be quite tempting. Resist the urge and try to limit spending to essentials. You are not leaving the house anyways, so why do you have to buy clothes for work…even though they are on sale?
3. Learn a new skill
The New Year was not that long ago, and many of us made resolutions to learn something new. Now is the time to do it. There are many online sources where you can learn a new skill. One that I have been meaning to sign up for is skillshare. Whether it is a new recipe or an instrument or even a language. Now may be the time to do something about it.
4. Consider picking up a side hustle
With all the talk about the economic implications of the pandemic, now is the best time to consider a side hustle. With the way the internet is, you can do almost anything for money. Some ideas that you can do online are tutoring, becoming a virtual assistant, copywriting, editing. You can find inspiration on sites like Fiverr and Upwork. You can even get paid to answer surveys online. I would encourage everyone, whether your career is hanging by a thread or secure as can be, to pick up a side hustle.
5. Update your resume
We often do not think of updating our resumes until we are looking for a new job, but it should really always be up to date. Use the down time that you may have to spruce up your resume. You never know when you will need it.
6. Clean or reorganize your home
The extra time that many of you have in your home provides an opportunity to do that home improvement project that you have put off for so long. Focus on one thing at a time and relish the feeling of accomplishment when you complete one project and move on to the next. Do not panic and feel like you have to do everything in one day. We do not know how long we are going to be in self isolation for.
7. Focus on building relationships
This time of social distancing does not have to feel so isolating. I believe that it is actually a great time to work on relationships. Take time to check in with your partner. Talk about how you are feeling- your fears and your hopes. How can you help each other during this time? Also check in with your friends and loved ones around the world. Many people are going through a very difficult time. We may not realize just how much other people’s lives are affected. Have some empathy, take time to call that friend you haven’t spoken to in a while- just to make sure they are ok. You can even schedule hangouts or dates on Facetime.
8. Stay calm and wash your hands
Let’s try to flatten the curve. I really believe that if we all play our part, we can beat this!
Stay Safe Friends!