We pretty much have three social priorities amidst a pandemic:
1. Avoid contagion as much as possible (ie: stay home).
2. Avoid overwhelming critical systems like hospitals
3. Keep the economy healthy; buy online, keep your money local
While we are all practicing #staying home, staying healthy, and buying goods and services for the greater good of our society, what are we supposed to do with ourselves?
We all need to maintain our sanity, give ourselves some love and attention, practice building relationships, and take care of our families and friends.
Here are four strategies that can help energize you during this difficult time:
Go for a walk to clear your mind. While sticking to the physical distancing rules, we can find peace and calmness on a long walk.
Ever walked around your own neighborhood?
Take this opportunity to change it or do it more often. You'll begin to notice stuff you've never thought about before.
There is something about playing in the dirt, getting your hands dirty, planting seeds and watching them grow that brings us to a certain solitude.
The garden is a place to watch life be reborn when human life had lost its shine because of a virus. Nature soothes the soul.
Thinking about others
Whenever you feel sorry for yourself, you can always bet it's worse at that same moment for somebody else.
All the service workers who have recently been laid off got, at best, two weeks pay. The hospitality industry doesn’t have all the same protections as other industries. You can go from doing okay and paying your student loans as a casual worker, to having no money overnight and trying to pay your electricity bill.
Focusing your thoughts on the struggles of others, showing empathy, and offering support helps heal your mind from selfish thoughts.
Keep your emotions in check...the key to not losing your mind is staying calm.
Remove certain triggers from your environment that can set you off, such as the news. Limit your news consumption and spend as much time as possible with your spouse and children.
Take time to make time with your family, pray, write, exercise, listen to music: keep your emotions balanced and calm.
No good decision making is ever made under stress. It takes practice mind you, so start today: when emotions start to get the best of you take a pause, take a breath, and take a step back from the situation. Acknowledge your emotions, don't ignore them. Set them aside, then re engage the situation.
Leave people better than you found them
A few parting thoughts:
- Use your time "off" from the normal routine of the world wisely
- Keep up with your network of friends, family, and colleagues
- Everyone will remember how you treated them
- Make people smile
- Tell people the good parts of life
- Show your loyalty to others
- Call people for no reason at all
Doing the right thing is always the right thing