The last two weeks have been unlike anything we have experienced. People all over the world are dealing with this in their own countries. But here in the United States, the novel coronavirus has changed life as we know it in the last few weeks and it’s changed quickly. I want to share with you what our family is doing to deal with the changes, the homeschooling, the shifts to business, the unknown and the stress. For some of us, we want to do something, anything to feel normal. Taking action can help us feel like we are at least doing something. That’s why we are having this chat today.
Things are changing fast.
First, I expect that we will continue to see the day by day changes that we have seen so far. I am writing this March 17, 2020, and right now some States have closed for the rest of the 2019-2020 school year. California is in talks to do the same. I am sure that in the days to come other States and Districts will do the same. In addition to schools closing some countries are on lock-down where you can only go to necessary medical appointments, the grocery store. I am sure others will follow.
I find myself frustrated with the fact that lives are so drastically changing and yet on social media people are still trying to go on Spring Break vacations, still hanging out with friends, still acting like life isn’t changing. I remember vividly a moment on 9-11 when my mother had just gotten home from LAX airport. She was a flight attendant for United Airlines at the time and was supposed to be flying from LA to NY that morning. Once flights were grounded she finally got home and I had never been happier to see her. As we hugged and cried she said to me ‘nothing is ever going to be the same’. That’s exactly how I feel about coronavirus. Nothing is ever going to be the same.
Yes, we will get back to life, but it will be a new normal. It won’t be the way that it was. We refer to ‘pre 9-11’ and we will refer to ‘before corona’. This is a world-changing event. I hope that one of the changes we see here in the states is a bit of a slow down on the 24-7 urgency that we have fallen into. But that is a topic for another day.
It’s not just us.
As adults we are struggling to make sense of the rapid change, it’s no wonder our kids and parents are also struggling. For those of you who have never worked at home, you are going to miss your daily routine, your co-workers (even those that bug you) and sometimes even your commute. For your kids, they are missing their friends and teachers, their routine, their school lunches and time away from their parents. For couples that are now all the sudden working at home together and maybe homeschooling kids it’s a whole different pace to the day. Here is what we are doing.
We have created a daily schedule for our family to make sure that we know what we are supposed to be doing and when as much for the kids as for me. I made sure to make the schedule with them because they need to have buy-in. They need to feel like they have some control over how they spend their time in these unpredictable times. So our schedule includes:
- Meditation & Yoga: We are using the calm app on the AppleTV for the family & family Yoga videos on YouTube.
- Movement: Outside when we can, bikes, scooters, running, playing, or just a walk but breaking up the day with movement has been critical.
- Quiet Time: Having space in the day for downtime. This is either reading time, lego time, art or whatever they decide.
- Learning Time: We still have to homeschool, so there is learning time that has to happen, we make this age-appropriate.
- Tech Time: Look, friends, mamma has to work from home and these kids love their tech and I am fine with it. We have afternoon tech time and it helps my little one knows what he is working towards.
- Prepping Meals Together: When kids are home all day, every day, they eat like all the time. I am having them help prep their own meals and snacks. They are also helping prep dinner because we have time…we aren’t rushing off to activities at the moment. They are also helping plan out the meals we will be having.
- Household Duties: Let’s talk about life skills. Kids deserve to learn life skills as young as possible. So we are working with the kids on laundry, cleaning routines and the like. There is something calming about cleaning. You feel like you have some control over your space. If you aren’t sure how to have your kids help with household duties my friend Kendra Hennessy over at Mother Like A Boss has the greatest resources for this.
It’s easy to allow stress to push out good habits. I don’t care how much time you have at home when you are under stress wellness isn’t always the first thought. But it’s an important one. Sure, wellness isn’t going to stop you from getting sick, but wellness can make you feel like you are doing something to take care of yourself. At least if you do get sick, with anything, you don’t start out depleted. Our wellness includes;
- Hydrate!!! You know this is key. Seriously you have all the toilet paper at this point and I know you have water…make it happen.
- Sleep: Life is less busy with the places you need to be, but it isn’t less stressful. Now more than ever you need to make sure you are getting enough sleep. Like at least 8 hours, bed by 10:00 boring-ass sleep. But it helps.
- Vitamin D: Most of us are significantly Vitamin D deficient. Even kids can be Vitamin D deficient. Our whole family supplements with Vitamin D. For a lot of us getting outside isn’t sufficient, especially if you are like me and sunscreen is a daily part of life. Vitamin D helps improve immunity and sleep so it’s amazing.
- A lot of us default to problem solver/worker mode when we are stressed. But one of the most powerful things we can do right now is building in space for rest, space for creativity, space for thought.
- I have learned quite a lot from the book Rest about how to productively rest.
- I also love the book Digital Minimalism about stepping back from the phone. The 24-hour news cycle can make us crazy. It’s ok to walk away.
What each of us does during this time matters. It’s ok to set this time to rest, to step back from the hustle. It’s ok to find an activity outside of working from home. You need to set boundaries for yourself and enforce them. We are all going to get through this together and if you want to chat about this or anything, the Get Legit Community on Facebook is a space curated by me so that we can have these conversations without judgment, or crazy social media BS. You know I’ve got you.
Emily D. Baker, Esq.
Badass Lawyer for Online Business
Emily has been running business for 15 years and has ove 13 years of legal experience. She spent 10 years at the Los Angeles County District attorney's office where she truly learned to be a solopreneur. Emily has built her consulting and speaking business from the ground up, in her garage jamming out to 90's music. She specializes in no BS practical advice for the starting and scaling online entreprenur. Emily will tell you what the business gurus can't in a way that is both hillarious and empowering.