I’m sure you have heard a thousand COVID-19 news broadcasts and heard from many experts, all with conflicting recommendations. It’s enough to make my head explode!
So, instead of focusing on the news and what’s posted in your feed, take some time and do what will keep you sane and moving forward. Try this instead:
For your mental health:
Turn off the television and stop scrolling through social media. At least for several hours a day. I get that it’s important to stay updated and to gain an understanding of what’s happening in the outside world, but scale back on the overload of information you’re taking in.
Be patient with yourself. We are all in unchartered territory. We’re not used to being home all the time. And even if we are, we’re not used to being told to stay in. We’re not used to home schooling. We’re not all used to working from home. And we’re certainly not all used to doing it at the same time. Take breaks. Ground yourself. It will work out.
Set a routine. Not a rigid one. Just one that gives you purpose every day. We’ve made it a point to exercise daily at 9:00. Focus on the kids’ school work from 10-12:00. Break for lunch and recess 😊 after that. And then we decide what our afternoon will look like. It’s not perfect, but it gives us a sense of “normal” in our day.
For your physical health:
Get some movement. Go for walks. Do an at-home workout. Try some free yoga On Demand, on YouTube or on Amazon Prime. The stress reducing benefits are pretty amazing!
Don’t feed your emotions. Your body and mind are dealing with things it’s never had to process before. Let yourself feel all the feels: fear, nerves, stress, boredom, sadness, exhaustion, hope, longing, overwhelm, excitement. All of it is valid. But don’t make the mistake of trying to mask those feelings with overeating. Trust me, the feelings will make their way back somehow. I’m not saying you should diet (I never say that). Just be mindful. Be aware of why you’re making certain choices. And honor that. The last thing you need is stomach pain and discomfort on top of everything else you’re feeling.
For your family:
Have some fun. Play games. Go for hikes. Try hide and seek in the dark (with flash lights). Play board games. Set up obstacles outside, or inside for that matter. Enjoy each other.
Journal. Twenty years from now, you and your children will be able to look back at your own words and reflect on what you went through. It would be awesome if we could look back and read about what we were feeling at the time and find a way to be grateful for what we overcame.
What we are experiencing as a whole is something I never would’ve imagine. It’s certainly brought me on a roller coaster of emotions. But I can say for sure, being forced to slow down has been eye opening. This time has taught me about the new normal I want to have moving forward: one that is about being present, and not at all about living life on the go.
Stay safe and healthy everyone. Praying for us all.