5 Essential Ways to Help You and Your Business Thrive During Lockdown
This is how you stay calm and productive.
Right now we're faced with one of the biggest challenges any of us have ever witnessed. How we react to the current pandemic will define our future. Most of us have been told to shelter inside and only leave to get basic necessities or if we have an "essential" job. COVID-19 will have most of us staying in our homes for weeks, if not months.
The new working and living arrangement dealt to us by the pandemic might feel OK to some of the introverts out there. But many others find themselves suffering after the first few weeks of confinement. Most people feel a little cabin fever and would like to freely leave home and just go somewhere — anywhere.
Isolation and concern over the situation can impact our mental health. However, entrepreneurs should find ways to remain calm for their loved ones and even their businesses, if they run them from home.
Here are five ways to remain calm during these uncertain times that will help each of us survive and even thrive.
Get in some exercise
You've likely read that physical movement and exercise regulates your hormones, helps you sleep and steadies your emotions. Now more than ever, it may be time to get started on those exercise resolutions and actually achieve them this year. The extra time you gain from no longer having a commute may leave plenty of time for physical activity.
Squeeze in an online workout between work hours. There are many options, including yoga and meditation videos, on social media sites, including YouTube and Facebook Live. Personal trainers who can no longer work in gyms because they've been closed are also offering online training sessions through services like Zoom. Or, if your at-home exercise equipment is covered in dust, it's an opportunity to clean it up and earn a return on the investment you made to buy it.
Get a breath of fresh air and vitamin D
When being cooped up starts to feel suffocating, go outside for fresh air. Hang out in your backyard or on your balcony or take a brisk walk through your neighborhood. It can give you a sense of freedom and space that alleviates the claustrophobia. Sometimes, just a change of scenery can fix your mood.
Since spring has arrived, there's also more sunshine. Those rays from the sun are an essential source of vitamin D to help fortify your immune system. You'll still need to maintain a safe distance from others and stick to areas around your home, because most parks and trails are closed. If you're fortunate enough to live close to forests or other natural areas, take advantage of that connection to nature.
Enjoy the time with your family or roommates. It's not always easy to spend so much time with people who you usually don't see all hours of the day, but make the best of it. These people make up a valuable support system.
See this increased interaction as an opportunity to bring your family closer together. You can help make your family feel better and address concerns that may have been lingering for months or years. You might never get another chance to bond quite like this, so enjoy it. If you're still running your own company or working for your employer, take regular breaks, have lunch with your kids or take a walk with your significant other.
Schedule for structure
If you've ever had a "staycation" during the holidays or summer break, then you know how easy it is to lose track of what day it is or how much time you spend binge-watching a streaming channel. Don't let yourself live in your pajamas and watch the days melt together.
Give yourself a sense of purpose and structure by creating a written schedule for your business and your family. Set specific hours for work and other activities each day. This will give comfort to the kids — and to your company's bottom line. By accomplishing things each day, your business performs better, and you build a sense of normalcy that creates good habits.
Reduce the news
It's good to stay updated on recent events and know where things stand. However, the amount of information on this pandemic — both real and fake — can easily become overwhelming. Decrease your media consumption, and you'll see your anxiety go down. Replace scrolling through the news with phone calls with friends and distant relatives who can help bring you comfort and joy.
Try different combinations of news consumption. I try to limit my intake to less than 30 minutes a day, but do what feels right for you. One of the many things online that shows this is all about perspective is a meme that says, "You are not stuck inside. You are safe inside."
Look at the positive side, and remember our actions determine how this turns out. What we can do now may save lives and bring us closer together than ever before as communities and as families.
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