During this time of uncertainty, its easy to get anxious and nervous. It’s easy to get caught up in the media hype, and basically just lose your mind.
It’s good to be worried. It’s good to be cautious, and take the correct precautions so we can tackle this virus together. We all need to heed the warning and follow all the government warnings in order to prevent lives from being lost. At the same time we are all stressed because some of us had to take time off work because schools are closed. Others are being forced to stop working while others have to work and struggle for childcare, or you’re trying to work from home while the kids are home also. All that is bound to stress us all out. Add stress to nervousness and anxiety, and you have the potential for a nervous breakdown.
This is what happens when we feel like we have zero control over our lives. However, you can always have control over your life, you just have to learn to take it. Organization in one form or another is how we take control of our lives and our homes.
You need to cut back on your news watching. You don't need to have it on all day. I'm not telling you to stop completely, just watch it a little less. Watch enough to stay informed, and up to date on current closures, and social recommendations, and follow those requests and recommendations.
Don't buy too much at the store. They are remaining open so you can go when you run out of something. We don't need to be overwhelming the stores and employees by buying them out of their inventory, and making it impossible for our higher risk neighbors to find what they need. That will cause others to over react and then the whole community is over reacting.
If you are in a situation where you are now home and the kids are home with you, you’re probably wondering how to handle it all without losing your mind. You don’t want the kids to spend all day on their devices but if you have your own work to do, it becomes hard.
My best suggestion is to time block, and schedule everything. I’m sure you’ve seen the sample schedule floating around on Facebook. Use this as your guide and tweak it for your own. Think about any school work you want the kids to accomplish. Some schools sent home work to be completed on the break so to keep it simple use that to guide their school work. They don’t need to spend 6 hours a day doing it though. Don’t forget about PE class. Get them outside to shoot some hoops or ride bikes. Practicing their sports at home is also a good idea since they are missing their team practices as well.
Also consider any house work you need finished. Have the kids do some of that, keeping it age appropriate. Consider it Home Ec class, and add in some lessons on budgeting and paying bills. Meal time is also Home Ec class when you have them prepare their own meals.
Think about what time of day your kids are most productive, and use that time block for the school work. And schedule the rest around that. If you have certain times you need to be in an online meeting or phone calls, then schedule the kids downtime around that so you know you won’t be interrupted.
And always remember, if something doesn’t seem to be working, then re-tweak it if you need to.
And when worse comes to worse, remember it’s ok to take a break and give them more free time! Get yourself outside, and take a long walk, or just go for a long drive. I went for a drive because I was about to lose my mind on a sassy teenager. It helped me clear my mind, and get some fresh air, and just get out of the house without going anywhere. I just drove around for an hour. It was peaceful on some of those back country roads around me. This is all new territory for all of us. We’re all going to learn, together, as we go, to accept this new norm, at least norm the time being, because no one knows how long this is really going last. If we can all stay positive, and responsible during this uncertain time, we will be doing ourselves a huge favor. We need to supportive and helpful of each other, now, more than ever. While you're at it, embrace the slowed down pace of life, and enjoy the extra time with your family.