These past few weeks in almost totally isolation have felt incredibly long. SRA has been proud that our community has listened to the orders of local and national officials in regards to staying home, limiting exposure to others, and helping flatten the curve so our communities can recover from COVID-19. However, extended time at home has been a challenge for many. While some people are finding extra time to get house projects completed, extra work done, and time with family squeezed in- for others this lockdown has seemed to drag on much longer and has caused a lack of motivation.
The importance of keeping a consistent and productive schedule is more important than ever. Creating some sense of normalcy (while in your own home) is important for your mental, physical, and emotional health. Read below some tips on how to keep your life more manageable and structured. Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay home!
Singles During COVID-19
If you are single and living alone during this time it will be incredibly important to work a little harder at maintaining a healthy and realistic schedule during your days to keep your occupied. You need to self motivate! What you lack compared to other people is access to just that... people. Even though you probably have plenty of friends and family you could see, you are being a responsible citizen (as well as adhering to local laws) and are not coming in contact with friends of family to protect yourself as well as them.
To maintain contact with friends and family, write down a list of those you really want to stay connected to or catch up with. Mom, dad, sisters, brothers, best friend, book club buddies- you name it. Reach out to them to schedule phone calls, zoom chats, or other audio/visual ways to connect. To make your conversations even more fun, try playing games together. Jackbox Games is a great online gaming platform that provides fun, and often really funny games for you to play on your phone or computer with people you know all over the world. Check it out HERE! (Quiplash is my favorite game)
Here are some other things you should be sure to work into your schedule:
Couples During COVID-19
Married or unmarried couples living together are getting the ultimate relationship test of a lifetime! As much as we love our SO, for some, so much time together can be a little taxing if you're used to or enjoy some time alone. It is key to have a conversation with your partner about your boundaries, needs, and expectations during this time together at home. Sit down with your partner and have a conversation where feelings are left aside so you both can honestly talk about the best approach to this enhanced time at home.
For others- this isn't as much of a problem. Perhaps both of you really enjoy constant companionship or interaction so this extra time at home is a blessing- good for you! Either way- no relationship is better than the other. Different people have different needs so it's important for both types of couples to still have a chat about home life.
For couples, you can use the suggested bullet points from Singles During COVID-19 to plan a productive day, but you might want to add a few other items. For example, feel free to add some of the bullet points below to your daily schedule:
It is also important to keep in mind that there has been a rise in domestic abuse reports in recent weeks. If you find yourself in an abusive relationship please reach out to a trusted family member or contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
Families During COVID-19
What a wonderful time for extra family time! A few of you may have just rolled your eyes, and I totally understand where you are coming from, but my main advice here is to try as be as positive as possible. Compared to singles and couples right now, you've got quite a few extra bodies in your household making messes, getting in the way, possibly making demands, and much more. Take a deep breath- you can and will survive!
The single most important thing for families quarantining or staying home together is creating a schedule and having structure. Making sure that schedule communicated clearly and adhered to is also important. Make sure this schedule is realistic and allows for some wiggle room. You and your spouse or the adults of the household need to work together as a team, especially when handling children. Create a schedule for the kids first, and then create your own schedule around theirs. As much as you want to sleep in, waking up earlier than the kids can give you more time together as a couple, to squeeze in a workout, or just prepare yourself for the day. Set an early alarm.
For the kids- try to sympathize with them. They have tons of energy usually taken up by school and activities. Now they are stuck inside. Give them a disciplined schedule and have them help with household tasks too! Kids schedules can look like the following:
Every family's schedule will look different, but make sure there is one written down. Write it on a white board or a poster and place it for everyone to easily see. You can even let your family help make it and add cool stickers, bright colors, and fun patterns to it.
Again, parents should work as a team- possibly splitting supervisory duties so each adult can get work done and their own time away from their beloved children (hey, mental health is important folks!). Try to start each day with clear communication on who is doing what. Keep a positive mindset about using this time to strengthen your bonds as a family and make some memories.
For older children, keep in mind that a schedule is also important. Don't let them take off on their own simply because they are driving you a bit nuts. Teens and young adults have been congregating in parks and other public areas which is only more of a danger to themselves and others. Older children are capable of helping out more around the house with cleaning, yard work, cooking, and more. You might get a few initial groans, but communicate to them how much you appreciate their help during this time (and that as long as they live under your roof they do what you say!).
For tips on working from home CLICK HERE.
For professional advice on parenting during the pandemic, CLICK HERE.
Family activities to do during COVID-19.
You've got this. Create a schedule, stick to it, be easy on yourself for mistakes or frustration, look on the positive side, stay in touch with loved ones, and use this time at home as an opportunity as opposed to a jail-sentence. Remember that staying home is the least we can do to hep our communities get through an incredibly tough time. Every day at home is one step closer towards flattening the curve. SRA wishes you the best, asks you to stay home, and hopes to see you on the water when it is safe again.