Suddenly so many people are working from home because of Covid-19. Even with your own family it can feel very isolating, weird and new. I get it, I’m new at having my fam all home but the being home part is mostly just another day because I’ve worked from home since 2007.
I have previous isolation experience and I’ve got good experience with handling it.
It’s been a crazy time right now.
I’ve been thinking about how I can help.
I’ve been thinking about what’s most important for me to do right now.
I’ve been thinking about my family and their health (of course).
While we ARE isolated, we do not have to be ALONE!
Even if you are a single person isolating alone you have so many ways to beat the isolation blues.
I wrote a post a few years ago about how to beat isolation and loneliness while working from home and MOST of my tips were about going to events, meeting friends for coffee, going to coworking, working from the library, etc. Obviously not so relevant when you literally should not be leaving your house at all.
But I DO also have don’t leave the house experience, too:
- In 2007 I got myself into a rut that lead to burnout where I worked all day long, constantly, taking no breaks and neglecting my self care. I was isolating in desperation to earn money and it was bad, bad, bad (for me and for business).
- In 2013 I broke both bones in my ankle and had to spend about three months literally on the couch, getting up only for washing and bathroom breaks and eventually to get myself some food when I could move. It taught me a LOT about being still and being happy with JUST being YOU.
- In 2014 I had a beautiful baby girl and for the next three years I spent about 95% of my time and attention on her as she was high-demand and I was barely sleeping. The lack of sleep made me really feel like I couldn’t function resulting in a hot-mess-mom who did NOT want to leave the house.
So, yea, you’re looking at an experienced isolator right here lol!
When you can’t leave home, here are my best tips to keep you SANE, PRODUCTIVE and HAPPY EVEN:
Gratitide is magic pixie dust:
YEP, you know this!
I couldn’t help but notice when I broke my ankle home my people RAN to me to help.
Literally my husband rushed out the house when I called him from the sidewalk, got me a blanket to keep me warm and never left my side as we waited for the ambulance. My parents rallied to get my son at school. My son, when home, cooked me food, got me things and cleaned his room then took pics so I could see. I was on the couch, my leg in pieces (literally as they sent me home before surgery) and I felt so much LOVE that it was all OK. Weird, but true.
Maybe you don’t have this situation but there’s ALWAYS something good. Always something to be grateful for.
Look for that.
With Covid-19 there are so many things to be grateful for:
- The world is letting the earth have a break with less vehicles from land and air spewing out emissions.
- Most of us have the comfort to isolate with technology and have access to people and conversations at the click of a mouse. Not truly isolated at all socially.
- We are seeing the responses of people who are HELPERS. People who are stepping up to find out what and how they can help.
- The front line people. The people who didn’t ask to be hero’s but now are. If you do have to go out for groceries or any essential I bed it would brighten their day, and yours, to offer a heartfelt thank you to someone who serves you.
Self-Care is Essential
Remember hot-mess-mom I told you about up above?
She was someone I lived with for FAR longer than I wanted to and I wish I’d done something about her sooner.
She made me stressed (about me).
She probably made me a bit depressed (about me).
You don’t want to get there – don’t go there!
A little self-care goes a long way!
I’m talking about:
- regular showers
- GET DRESSED
- put your makeup on
- do your hair
- EAT WELL
- get outside for walks (while social distancing of course)
I’d like to single out the get dressed part because to me it was a really important one. Sure it’s a great novelty right now to wear your “daytime pjs” and your “nighttime pjs” but living and working in your pjs while letting the showers and the hair and the eating slip is a very slippery slope. Keep down this path and one day you might look in the mirror and wonder “WTF happened?!” … Ask me how I know! 🤔
creativity is theraputic
I bought three canvas boards for painting and we had a family painting session (hubby was at work at the time). I asked my teen son if he wanted to participate and he said YES, which surprised me.
I created this “art”. I’m no artist but I just wanted to paint my feelings. The middle is the threat we have to face right now and the darkness surrounding it. The circles and lines are the people joining together and the outside is the peace, calm and harmony once we beat this thing – and we will.
This was therapeutic!
You don’t have to paint, of course.
There are so many other ways to be creative!
- Take on a home project
- Create a product, course or training
- Learn to play a musical instrument
- Make jewelry or ornaments
- Sew, quilt, knit, etc.
Those are just the tip of the iceberg! Soooo many things you could create!
Here are more ideas:
Community is needed now more than ever
I run a paid online community, the Laptop Lifestyle YOU.
We meet every week and these last few weeks have been sooo important to me and, I think, to members. They know they have a place where they are welcome and where they belong. They know it’s SAFE. They know people are there to connect with them.
We NEED this kind of community right now.
Thankfully in this time in our history you can even find that on Facebook.
I’m so heartened to see people REALLY listening, really responding, really communicating on what was previously, to me, a noisy blasting of opinions and arguments. I don’t know if it’s just my gratefulness and positive attitude but what I’m seeing on Facebook right now is just an amazing pulling together. The fights and silliness over who’s right or wrong seems to have fallen away (for me at least) and I see the good.
I see the funny memes (love them).
I see the people asking how they can help.
I see the gratitude for front line workers.
Facebook is a free community.
I have a paid community.
Your family is a community.
Get your people on Zoom. It’s EASY to use and you can have a bunch of people in a room on video for a chat and fun. It’s great to reconnect that way!
My daughter has been using Facebook video calls to talk to her BFF from school. They’re six and my daughter takes my phone, goes off and chats for an hour – mom break!
And speaking of the moms – please don’t overpressure yourself to get this all perfect! It’s a stressful time. I’ll be honest and tell you I felt a twinge of guilt when I saw the moms posting about how they started homeschooling yesterday.
I haven’t even LOOKED at what I might need to do to make that happen. I’m running a business and a household and trying to keep my shit together and not stress out so, yea, I’m giving myself some grace about not getting my daughter a grade-A education for a few weeks. I know she’ll be OK and we’ll figure it out as we go!
Do you have anything to add to this?
These are the best things I could come up with based on what I learned in isolation myself but I’m sure there are more tips and tips for people in different life circumstances. What’s worked for you? What is helping right now during Covid-19 social distancing, isolation or lockdown? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
If there’s anything I can do for you, anything I can answer PLEASE reach out. I ALWAYS love to answer emails, help by offering guidance and support you but now so more than ever I want you to know to just let me know.
Peace, Love & Laptops!
Angela Wills ✌❤💻