Let's be honest - dogs are getting the good end of this virus with all the walks they are getting. And... that picture most likely made you smile for a second and distracted you from all the virus updates. Mission accomplished.
Everywhere you look, you are being bombarded with updates and information about this corona virus. Most of it is rather depressing - involving increasing numbers, extended quarantines, shelters in place, and death. Occasionally, you'll see a funny meme that will make you laugh for a second - and then you're back in reality. Some people have cancelled vacations, weddings, birthdays, or can't go to work and are not getting paid. Some people are working from home, doing school online, and having virtual coffee dates with friends due to the required social distancing. Some people have lost loved ones. There are people who think this is the apocalypse, while other people think it isn't a big deal. Some people are buying all the toilet paper, and other people are not even going to the store. Some people are more depressed, other people are feeling more stressed, and yet other people are happy to have time to get to those projects they never have time for. No matter who you are, you are being impacted by this and there is some kind of major transition. So ... how do you mange this transition?
1. Find the silver lining. I know it's not easy to do and there are many reasons to be upset, but when you can find anything good in the situation, it can really impact the way you feel in a positive way. Ask yourself, what can I do to make this suck less?
2. Get more sleep. You have more time - this isn't impossible (even if you have kids). There are plenty of studies out there that state sleep not only increases your immune system, but it also allows you to process and download all the important information from the day to help you manage it more effectively.
3. Get more exercise. Exercise also increases your immune system, helps you cope with stress, and raises your mood. Yes, I know it's difficult to work out when we are on a shelter in place; however, you can go on walks and several places are offering virtual and online work outs you can utilize from your home.
4. Don't isolate yourself. I realize there is a social distancing in place but that doesn't mean you cannot call or video chat your friends and family. I understand it isn't the same, but it is better than feeling lonely - as many people do with no contact from anyone.
5. Create a schedule. People tend to feel more like themselves when they have a schedule to adhere to and can be somewhat productive. If you are someone who had structure in your day and now cannot work, figure out how to implement a routine to help you from falling into depression.
6. Get dressed. I know this may seem silly since you have no where to go, but if you sit around in your PJs all day, most people tend to feel like less of a human being. Take a shower, get dressed, and make sure you're taking care of yourself. Doing this often motivates people to do other things and feel better overall.
7. Relax. It is okay to take time to watch Netflix, read, bake, or whatever else you like to do to relax. This is actually encouraged because most people work too much and don't have enough fun. However, with less do to having to stay at home, this can become the other extreme. Make sure you're balancing having fun with your responsibilities.
If you or someone you know is feeling that this transition is too much to manage, please reach out and get help. Plenty of therapists are offering tele-health options, and you can even talk to your friends and family.