I just found out the school district I work for has closed due to coronavirus19. The length of time is uncertain. The reasons are understandable, to support the health and safety of all students and all staff. I imagine for those making the decision it must have been extremely difficult. There are some decisions in life that are right to do, completely understandable that they occur, and yet feel uncertain.
Friday we were informed this might happen. I did my due diligence in bringing home what work related materials I would bring. I stopped by the store to get some food, well for quite awhile. On Saturday I did my best to keep some normalcy in my life. I went to a fitness class where no equipment was needed, keeping my social distance from others around me. After class I ran some errands, yet with modifications in my life. I have some of those virus killer wipes in my car and I used them to wipe off what needed to be wiped off. This is a new normal for me.
Yet right now life is not anyone’s typical usual normal. Right now many people are panicked and scared about what is happening and what is to come. Many of us are feeling unsettled. I would say everyone yet Friday at the store a man shopping was verbally chastising all the morons (he kept using the word morons) for taking so much of the food. The coronavirus19 is something that affects every single solitary one of us. No matter who you are, what you do, this is impacting you. This is about all of us. We are in this together.
How we care for physical health and mental health on a daily basis is always important. In a time where there is stress, fear, uncertainty self care should become a higher priority. There are actions we can take to feel better. Here are some tips:
Listen and adhere to all of the guidelines the experts are telling you to do. Wash your hands and sing happy birthday two times like it’s nobody’s business. Have social distance. Keep to a good sleep routine. Eat healthy foods. Get some exercise. If you are a gym person and are not comfortable going to your gym there are all sorts of free fitness stuff on the internet, netflix, amazon, and more. Go for walks, go jogging as Anchorman Ron Burgndy would say. Move. Use hand sanitizers, clean your work space and don’t forget the doorknobs. Last week where I was hearing more about the coronavirus19 I began a daily practice of wiping down my workspace when I left at the end of the day. This is probably something I should have been doing all along. Listen to your body. If you are feeling sick call your Dr. and stay away from others. One thing that helps me practice better awareness and health habits is that I would feel HORRIBLE if I found out I had the coronavirus19 and gave it to someone else. I do not have any symptoms at all and feel great physically. Yet I take all the necessary precautions the experts are advising to be protective of others and protective of myself.
Begin with practicing your breathing, adding in some meditation and mindfulness. Seek information about what is going on from creditable sources so you have knowledge of the facts are and not the fiction. Limit how much you watch or read about the coronavirus19. Keep a routine. Identify what you can control and take action on those things. Reach out to your supports and check on them. Identify things you are grateful for and daily give thanks for the good happening to you. Clean, organize, and take care of some of the projects you have been putting off. Color, draw, paint, sew, create crafts, play games. Read, get outside and walk. Keep in touch with your supports. Neuroscience News reports there are three scientifically proven ways to combat this intense stress include: EXERCISE (you can still go outside and walk, play tennis, golf, hike, and other activities), CONNECTING with people around you such as your family, friends, neighbors (which you can do with a phone call, FaceTime, skype. You can go for a walk together keeping socially distant from each other. The third is LEARNING. Neuroscience News states “Education leads to a cognitive reserve – a stockpile of thinking abilities – which provides some protection when we have negative life events. Research shows that people are less likely to suffer from depression and problems in cognition if they have better cognitive reserve.” If you are struggling emotionally let those around you know. There are national and community hotlines to call. If you have a therapist or counselor work with them to help you cope in healthy ways with the feelings you are experiencing.
BE KIND AND HELP OTHERS
Being kind and helping others has physical benefits and mental benefits. It’s a natural painkiller. An article by aifc.com.ua states “Stress – kind people age slower and have lower stress than the average person. Anxiety & Depression – kindness improves mood, depression and anxiety. Kindness stimulates the production of serotonin which heals wounds, calms and increases happiness.” No matter you are and what you have there are things you can do to support others right now. Send a text telling someone you are thinking of them, call someone up to check on them. If possible check on your neighbors and offer assistance. If you have the means and resources donate food and other items to places in need. You can use Instacart and Amazon to do so. Right now, today, there are some individuals who DO NOT have the means or resources some of us have. Look at the items you might have stockpiled in your panic mode. Do you really need all that toilet paper, mac and cheese, canned soup? The stores will be open. You will be able to buy more products. Take some of those items and HELP OTHERS. You will be the better for it. Also don’t forget about our pets and shelters. They are also in great need🐱🐶
“There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew” Marshall McLuhan
Some of the most beautiful stories I have seen from what is happening in our world was the singing of those in isolation in Italy, the clapping and applause in Spain as a thank you to the healthcare workers. We are stronger, tougher, smarter together. While that might look different right now, we can do it. I believe in each and every one of you. I believe in us.
Most incredible person please take care of your wonderful self! Keep tabs on your physical health and mental health. Do kind things for others. These three things combined are a trifecta of strength, power, and good.
May your Coronavirus19 Care be with you💜
PS – If you are doing or hear of other doing acts of kindness during this challenging time please email us. We would love to post and do a shout out about it. Thank you so much❤️