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Eight Ways to Survive the Pandemic

Mar 23, 2020

The great social experiment has begun.

No one wanted this. No one planned this. This tragic coronavirus outbreak has thrown our lives into near panic and has forced us to rethink our lives in ways we’d never imagined.

Please note: I understand there are millions of people who have lost their livelihoods or, even worse, been stricken with this awful disease and are stuck in a place no one wants to be in. I don’t have any answers for them, except to say that I pray there is a way to alleviate their suffering.

What’s I’m writing here is for the rest of us who are not facing imminent financial ruin but are forced now to alter our lives in the shelter of our homes.  

The natural default reaction to all of this is fear. Whenever we’re faced with something we don’t understand, especially when it happens with the speed of this virus, we go to that place where we focus on the worst things imaginable. This is very understandable.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. As a world, a nation and on an individual level we have an opportunity to do a reset. With the forced break in our regular lives, we have the choice to either live in fear or embrace new possibilities. That’s why I’ve come up with this list of eight ways to get through this crisis with hope, empowerment and I dare say, joy.

  1. Tackle the fear. The unknown is scary and feeding that fear can be harmful to your health, as stress has been proven to lower the immune system. How do can you cope with the fear brought on by this pandemic? Step one is to ask yourself the question: What are you afraid of? If the answer is, catching the virus, then you need to take the actions to keep yourself safe. The virus is real and can’t be ignored and while there is no cure, there are ways to mitigate the chances of getting infected. Most of us are already doing the things recommended by the CDC and government officials: limiting our contact with others, sheltering in place, washing our hands often, using sanitizers and other preventive advice we’ve been bombarded with over the media these past few weeks. Often the simple act of taking action is enough to lessen the feeling of helplessness when facing an unknown adversary.

          2. Meditate. Why do I put meditation second on the list?  It’s important to quiet the mind, and meditation does                   this by literally changing our brain waves to operate at a frequency that helps us think rationally, clearly and                     creatively. If you don’t like to meditate, check out the article I wrote on meditation for those who don’t like to                     meditate. https://thedreamcoach.net/blog?uri=13

         3. Exercise. We need to keep our bodies as healthy as our minds, especially since healthy bodies with healthy                immune systems are better suited to fight off viruses. Fortunately being homebound and unable to go to your                  local  gym doesn’t mean you can’t stretch your muscles. There are a number of online exercise programs being              offered by groups like the YMCA, Silver Sneakers, nationwide gym chains and many local providers, including                yoga and Tai Chi. Don’t use being forced to stay home as an excuse to ignore your body.

        4. Bake. When I last went to my local supermarket to stock up on supplies, I was amazed to find it was almost                  sold out of flour. It’s probably not surprising. People at home have the time to do things they might not normally                do,  like bake. While perhaps not the most nutritious thing to do, baking does provide important needed psychic              benefits.  Following a recipe, particularly one new to you, stimulates your brain. The delectable smells coming                from the oven during the baking process, is aromatherapy that can help alleviate any stress or anxiety you might            be feeling. And eating that delicious morsel afterwards can make you smile, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

       5. Hobbies. I’ve heard anecdotal evidence that people are using their time sheltering in place to take up items on            their bucket lists. Take advantage of this time by starting that project you’ve always wanted to do or finish that                  venture you’ve put off because of lack of time. Well, you have the time now. Use it to satisfy those soul urgings.

       6. Self-educate. Again, consider the possibilities available to you with all that extra time on your hand. Go online              and search for ways you can improve your mind. Learn a new language, learn a new skill, take a tour of the great            museums, read a new book. If you’re not sure what to do, take one of those online tests that can help you focus in          on what interests you.

        7. Internet interaction. We’re lucky that we live in the age of technology that enables us to communicate                         electronically. Social distancing is not social isolation. Use FaceTime, Skype, Zoom or other providers to talk with           relatives, friends, groups. If you find modern technology daunting, use the telephone or go really old school and               write letters. Being cooped up at home can feel confining but as long as you remember you have ways to connect           with others you will never be alone.

       8. Dream. I couldn’t create a list like this without mentioning dreams. Now more than ever is the time to pay                       attention to our dreams. There will be a time we’ll come out of this crisis and having the guidance you can get                 from your dreams will leave you well positioned to leap to your greatness when this is all said and done.

 



 

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