Schools are closed, don’t travel, wash your hands, make sure you have hand sanitizer and on and on and on – if you’re feeling anxious and confused – you are not alone. During this time of COVID-19 and quarantine, we are being challenged in ways we did not see coming. You are surely losing out on some planned activities, but please don’t lose your mind in the process. Here are some helpful hints:
#WFH: As a person who has worked from home for over 25 years, I am well-practiced in this art. Some things to know are:
- You do not have to dress for success. Be comfy! Your pets and family will not think less of you if you are not in your power suit. If you must appear buttoned up on a conference call, wear a nice top for the call, then back to sweats as soon as you “leave the meeting”.
- Speaking of meetings, now is the time to reschedule all meetings to conference call status. Zoom is an easy to use an inexpensive conference call and video meeting offering.
- You need boundaries. Family and friends may forget that the operative word in working from home is “working”. Yes, you are home, but no you are not freed up to take on more errands and housework.
- You need downtime too! Just because you are working from home does not mean that work needs extend into home time. Mentally “leave the office” so we can enjoy your hours off.
Classes Cancelled: If you have children at home, here are some thoughts.
- Of course, the kids can stream the day away. If you have Netflix, Disney+, Hulu and the like, there is plenty to watch.
- Then there are the video games. Keep in mind that not all games need be played solo, there are plenty of downloadable games for the whole family.
- Play can be balanced out with other activities. There are several museums that can be experienced from your own home. This includes the British Museum in London, the Guggenheim Museum in New York and more.
- Engage the kids in meal preparation; have them help bake cookies, toss the salad, butter the bread.
- Bring out the craft supplies and find easy great ideas on YouTube.
- If there is too much sitting and not enough moving, check out these kids exercise videos.
- Send the kids on a digital exploration. List 10 things you want kids to find on the internet. Suggest they find things like – the names of all of Saturn’s moons, learn about a bug they never heard of before, list facts about their favorite pop-star, etc.
- Have the kids research the what-to-do and what-to-see for the next family vacation. Allowing them to ponder about future fun and not dwell on what is happening right now can really lift their spirits and take down anxiety levels.
We will get through this. All of us are going to be affected in some way. It will pass. And remember, even in times like these, the human spirit lives on and we can still sing.