Whoa! What a year so far! I was hoping that I was going to wake up and find that our new reality was a very unpleasant dream, or waiting for someone to call CUT. As this hasn’t happened, like you I’m trying to do my best every day to navigate my way through this new normal and stay sane during Coronavirus.
Not to say I have all the answers, but I’ve come up with is a few simple ideas, thoughts, steps to help you keep yourself and family on track through this time. There are no facts, figures, how to flatten the curve, graphs or scientific research to be found, just some good old common-sense, honesty, support and love.
How to stay sane during Coronavirus
1 – Back to Basics
Looking after your health is vital. Making sure you have all the basics as well as everyone else is critical.
A few things to remember;
- Keep yourself hydrated – preferably water more than wine!
- Eat plenty of healthy foods as much as possible – although I will be eating carbs and cake.
- Rest and sleep as much as you can.
- Move your body regularly and exercise – anything from twerking to planks – dancing to pushups.
- Laughter and fun is the perfect antidote, make sure you bring plenty of this into your daily life.
2 – Helping Others
Compassion, patience, support and kindness is what’s needed at a time like this, and nothing is better than asking if someone else needs anything, or offering some support.
A listening ear, sending an email or message, calling a loved one, or knocking on the door of an elderly neighbour are great ways to let people know you care. There’s no better way to improve your well-being – connect, reach out, or see if there’s a way to give back to your community.
3 – How Are You Coping With Everything?
Do you overreact?
We all respond differently depending on the situation, and knowing what your default will help you to gain awareness, and the opportunity to change if you wish to do so.
The next time you find yourself losing the plot because you’ve picked up another pair of socks, or highly charged because your child isn’t doing their school work – take a pause and leave the room. Put yourself in time out – seriously! No amount of shouting raised voices will help. I know because I’ve done it a thousand times.
Take a deep breath, count to one hundred if you need to and only return when you are calm. Self-control is the key – once this is mastered the quality of your life will improve beyond belief. You will need this skill more than ever with everyone being at home!
5 – Be Real
None of us knows when this will be over, and many of us are living in fear. Many of us struggling, afraid or worried, and this is all perfectly normal. I think over the last few weeks I’ve had every emotion under the sun!
It’s ok to say I’m scared.
It’s ok to say I’m worried.
It’s ok to say I don’t know what to do.
Showing vulnerability is not a sign of weakness, and can often give other’s permission to be open with how their feeling.
None of us has all the answers, and if you need support reach out to a professional, trusted friend, or family member. Do not suffer in silence.
6 – Keep To A Routine
With the schools temporarily closed and more people working from home, it could be easy to lose your routine. With a family, it’s essential to keep a routine, as this will help everyone to feel safe, have certainty and structure. Simple to do – Set your morning alarm to your usual time.
Have breakfast, lunch, dinner and bedtime at roughly the same time in the weekdays. Schoolwork, play, downtime at the same times in the week and then everyone will begin to know what’s expected and give a flow to the day.
7 – Daily Rituals
Daily rituals are a great way to give your day meaning and purpose.
Meditation, journaling, yoga, reading, podcasts, or even a few deep breaths every morning are positive ways to begin your day. Journaling has the added bonus of dumping all of your unwanted thoughts onto a page and clears them out of your mind – giving you mental space, which you are going to need with there being very little external space!
8 – Family Plan
To say the least, relationships are going to be tested.
You’re going to firstly wonder why you got married to this person, and secondly why you thought having children was such a great idea. With kids home, parents working from home there is going to be little space, and you’d have to be Saint for tensions not to rise. Coming up with a Family Plan on how this is going to work is a great place to begin. Have a family meeting where everyone can have their say on how this will work, and if you want to get creative design an agreement.
Important to connect at this time, make sure everyone understands what’s going on and if they need some extra support or comfort. Then you could meet up once a week to see if any adjustments need to be made (they will!). This very much depends on the age of your children but working together will aid in a more peaceful home.
9 – Space
We all need space. Finding space, a moment to yourself could be challenging. However, you must find a little time each day to do this – even if it’s a case of locking yourself in the bathroom!
10 – Reduce time on social media
The news and your social media feeds are full of negativity. Words like death, self-isolation, pandemic, virus and lockdown are everywhere.
I prefer words like chocolate, holiday, bread and the beach!
Seriously though the news is draining and does affect our mood. Of course, it’s essential to stay informed, but if you’re anything like me looking at the figures rising every hour, this is not going to help.
Reduce the amount of time, to say a few times day, as this will help to keep your focus on the right things, and potentially improve your overall well-being.
11 – Support System
Just because we have social distancing or we cannot go out, doesn’t mean we can’t still meet up. Adjustments have to be made, but we can still arrange things.
Arrange a time once or twice a week to have a virtual coffee or drink with your friends and family.
Arrange a virtual party.
Arrange a virtual movie night.
Time to be creative and think how you and your loved ones can still see each other and be connected.
12 – Clutter-Free
There will be things you’ve been putting off, or haven’t fixed in your home and now is the time to get these things done. There are always drawers, cupboards that need tidying. Clothes that you haven’t worn in years, or hoped you’d fit into once you lost the weight – that need to go in a bag ready for the Charity shop. Garage or loft you haven’t cleared up in years.
Time to get our lives in order and this is a perfect time. The benefits of decluttering go beyond the tangible benefits as it helps you to take control of your home, life and improve your overall well-being.
13 – Think out of the Box
Being openminded, flexible, and the ability to adapt quickly is going to be another useful ingredient to succeeding at this time. We can all look at what we can’t do at this moment and get frustrated or upset.
But, this way of thinking is not going to get you anywhere. Instead, start looking in another direction.
What can I do instead?
What things can I do online?
What can I learn, make, create, bake?
There will be an endless list, as long as you are open to the possibilities.
14 – Blessings in Disguise
I could be pushing it with this one, but what the heck I’m going to brave and mention it!
We live in a fast-paced life, full of distractions and materialism. Rushing around from one thing to another often, without a thought for what or why we do the things we do. Time to put the brakes on and get your priorities in order.
Could this be the time to reassess your values, and what’s most important to you? Could this be the time to connect with people who you’ve lost touch with over the years? Could this be the time to work on your relationships and connections? Could this be the time to bury the hatchet with someone you fell out with years ago? Could this be the time to learn something new or let go of some old baggage. No matter what shows up in life, there is always a gift in there somewhere, if you’re willing to look for the blessing in disguise!
15 – Lots of Love
Patience, kindness, compassion and lots love for yourself and others is essential. Everyone will be dealing with this in their own way.
Some days will go better than others, and sometimes you’ll feel good, other times you may feel anxious. Some times you’ll want to put the kids up for adoption, and other times your heart will be bursting with joy.
Know there will be challenges, there will be highs and lows and things will be ok in the end.
THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN TRYING TO STAY SANE DURING CORONAVIRUS
MAKE SURE YOU HAVE ALL YOUR BASIC NEEDS MET.
HELP OTHERS – TAKES YOUR FOCUS OFF YOURSELF & FEELS SO GOOD!
BECOME AWARE OF YOUR DEFAULT IN SITUATIONS.
PUT YOURSELF IN TIME OUT.
BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF AND OTHERS.
KEEP TO A DAILY ROUTINE.
BRING SOME RITUALS INTO YOUR DAILY LIFE.
CREATE A FAMILY PLAN.
GIVE YOURSELF SOME SPACE EACH DAY.
REDUCE TIME ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND NEWS.
VIRTUALLY MEETUP REGULARLY WITH YOUR TRIBE.
DECLUTTER YOUR HOME AND LIFE.
BE OPENMINDED, FLEXIBLE, ADAPTABLE AND OPEN TO THE POSSIBILITIES.
LOOK FOR THE BLESSINGS IN DISGUISE.
PATIENCE, KINDNESS, COMPASSION AND LOTS OF LOVE.