Is there a reset button? Seriously, could we reset this year and start it all over again?
The COVID-19 crisis has disrupted our lives in 2020. One minute we’re going about life wondering if we will accomplish our goals for the year; the next minute we’re wondering when and if we’ll ever be able to leave our homes and interact with others freely! Heck, it didn’t even give those of us who had slipped up a bit time to get back on track!
If you could have predicted that in the last 3 weeks of March we would be home quarantined, schools and non-essential businesses would be closed, events canceled, restricted travel, millions of people out of work, and sadly, over 1.5 million across the globe infected with coronavirus and thousands losing their lives, we would have thought you were nuts!
Yet, here we are, wondering what in the heck happened and when it’s all going to get better. With the media preaching doom and gloom and politicians seemingly confused on how to handle this crisis, it’s easy to feel helpless. But we must not allow that to happen. We can either allow this virus to defeat us or we can choose to fight. We choose the latter!
We believe each of us can play a role to help us get through this crisis. After all, we’re all in this together; the coronavirus does not discriminate. It doesn’t care about your nationality, race, gender, or economic status.
Here at gapmuse, we want to do our part too. In addition to encouraging everyone to stay at home, practice social (physical) distancing, wash their hands, wear a mask (if you can find one and if not, a face-covering like a bandana), we’re offering recommendations on how to survive and thrive during this crisis.
Here are 8 ways you can stay positive and motivated during this COVID-19 crisis:
1. Get out for fresh air!
Take a walk, hike, or go for a bike ride. You’ll get your daily dose of vitamin D, boost your endorphins and feel better about yourself. Also, you will be amazed by what you discover as you explore more of your neighborhood. Be sure to wear a face mask and to maintain your physical distance when you run into people. It can get awkward but hey, safety first!
Do things you normally do but in your house (and if you don’t typically do anything, start now.) Practice yoga, get on your treadmill (if you have one), do strength training, and dance! There are plenty of yoga and dance choreography videos on Youtube for all levels! Simply clear your living room and get your groove on; whatever it may be. It will be worth it!
3. Stay connected to your friends and family
Thank goodness for technology! Can you imagine what it would be like without video chat, text, WhatsApp, FaceTime, video conferencing tools (Zoom, Skype, Webex, etc.), and all other types of media we have today to communicate? There is simply no excuse to feel disconnected! Organize a group chat with your friends and do some fun stuff together — happy hour, watch your favorite Netflix show, review a book, play games, dance, — and anything else that you would normally do as friends. Touch base with your family as often as possible. Share photos of kids going about their day with grandparents, and call, text, or video chat with them, your siblings and extended family members.
4. Remain connected to your community
Nothing has been harder for me than being unable to attend my dance classes, meet up with friends for a drink, visit with family, or go for a hike with women from our gapmuseWomen community. Our kids are feeling the pain too! My little one says the hardest thing about being quarantined away from school is not being able to hang out with her friends. But just because we cannot meet physically does not mean we have to be disconnected.
Technology allows us to reach out and hang out with our community. Recently, I organized a group video chat using Zoom for my little one to connect with five of her besties. They had such an awesome time they decided to have it at least once a week. Also, one of the moms in the group suggested the kids create a Google Hangout where they can chat whenever they want to. It’s also been a hit!
According to this Wall Street Journal article, science shows we can build meaningful connections by using virtual tools because they allow us to experience the visual cues we rely on to feel connected. So go ahead, organize virtual meetups (with video) for things you would normally do together. Maybe it’s your monthly book club, or your dance or yoga class. Participate actively in Facebook groups you belong to. And if you don’t belong to any, find one that interests you and join. It’s a fantastic way to feel connected to people with like-minded interests.
Join our Facebook group, gapmuseWomen, our safe community for women to connect, collaborate, engage, and thrive together.
5. Spend quality time with your kids
When I first learned schools would be closed for two weeks, I thought, well, that’s doable! It would be an adjustment but we would figure it out. Little did I know what was coming! Fast forward to today and schools are closed for the rest of the year! Yikes! I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t freaked out. Three months of being quarantined in the house with kids is a lot! I mean, I love my girls but whoa!
Luckily, we’re finding our groove. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is to shift my perspective a bit; I could either view our situation as stressful or look at it as an opportunity to spend quality time that is typically elusive with our busy schedules. We’ve been taking walks every other day, baking and cooking together, playing board games and plan to go for more bike rides and hikes in the coming weekends. My little one even created a board game that turned out to be quite fun! Since I have a teen in the house, I’ve been giving her the space she needs as much as possible and allowing her to manage her schedule on her own without much interference. So far, this strategy appears to be working. There’s less friction and she’s much happier!
Lastly, find something meaningful for your kids to do outside of their schoolwork. Recently, I had my girls help me take inventory of feminine hygiene products we collected for our Q1 2020 Quarterly Period Products Drive through our gapmuseWomen Facebook group. It was a great way to involve them in the project while at the same time instilling the importance of giving back and helping those in need.
6. Pursue your passions
Have you been putting off doing something you love because you lack time to do it? Now’s the time to jumpstart it! Whether it’s reading those books collecting dust on your shelf, starting a blog, learning a new skill, or creating your side hustle, exploring your creativity, journaling, scrapbooking or more, there’s no better time to start. There are many online learning platforms and colleges offering free or discounted classes.
Want more ideas? Our gapmuseWomen community has you covered! Join our group today to access our Weekend Activities Ideas list.
7. Reduce clutter
I don’t know about you but it’s always a challenge to clean out my closet for spring. There’s just never enough time in the day or month to do it. The struggle is real (albeit a first world problem!) Now that you have more time to spare at home, why not use it to declutter your closet? Think it’s tedious and boring, make it fun! We’re planning a Virtual Marketplace with a group of women from our gapmuseWomen Facebook group to swap, give or sell clothes, shoes, and accessories over music, wine, and cocktails. Why not try the same thing. It’s a great way to stay connected with your community and to reduce your carbon footprint from your closet; the more we share and exchange stuff from our closets, the less we need to shop for new stuff, the less carbon is generated by the fashion industry.
8. Do something for someone else
The coronavirus pandemic has made life challenging for all of us. It’s easy to feel sad, helpless and defeated. One of the best ways to reduce these feelings is to shift focus away from yourself and to redirect your energy to someone else by giving back. Take some time to reach out to someone, especially the most vulnerable — seniors, healthcare and essential workers –– and find out if there is anything you can do to help. Offer to grocery shop for someone who cannot do it themselves. Support small business owners to help them survive this coronavirus crisis. If you are a small business owner and reading this, Facebook is offering amazing resources to help you build resilience for your company during this challenging time.
Volunteer your skills to causes that are helping to combat the crisis. One such cause is Masks For Change, a community of women created by Women Like Us Foundation to rally women from across the United States to sew much-needed masks. They’re also mobilizing women in Kenya to sew masks through their Women Center in Nakuru, providing not only a critical income source for the women but also fulfilling the growing need for masks everywhere.
Click here to get more tips on how to support small business from our gapmuseWomen community
The human spirit is resilient. We are capable of surviving even the most challenging of times and we have done it repeatedly throughout history.
It’s never an easy task but with the right mindset and actions we’re able to overcome the worst of circumstances.
Don’t let this virus defeat you. Stay safe. Stay strong. Stay positive. Get out, stay healthy, remain connected to your friends, family, and community, look out for others, give back, pursue your passions, and invest in yourself all the while remembering; like everything else, this too shall come to pass.
How are you staying positive and motivated during this crisis? Please share. It may inspire our readers too.