Staying Connected During COVID-19: A Time for Growing Beyond

To say this is a challenging time is an understatement. Yet, when looking for the words to describe what this is I am at a loss. Unprecedented, crazy, evolving are heard frequently, yet fail to capture all that we are experiencing. We are all experiencing this reality for the first time and with that comes an array of challenges. Whether you’re working from home with children (we like to call them little co-workers), living on your own, or on the frontlines, we are all being asked to make a change in our daily lives for our community.

Change, though difficult, is good. In fact, it’s necessary for growth. We go through a season of leaves falling so that we can see beautiful new growth after the thaw. This is a season of growth for all of us and if you put in the work, you are going to see some beautiful results on the other end.

During times of change and growth, it’s more important than ever to take care of yourself. Make sure that you’re running on all cylinders so that you can be ready to tackle any challenge life throws your way. To help with this time of change we have put together some of our favorite resources to keep personal health a priority.

Your World Gone Virtual

Perhaps the most drastic change to your routine is that you’re now asked to work from home everyday rather than at an office. Here are a couple of ways to set yourself up for success while working from home:

  • Taking your entire workday virtual can have a bigger effect on you than you may be aware of. You are now on your computer and looking at a screen for your entire day rather than in and out of meetings and talking with co-workers. Try out a pair of blue light glasses or take screen breaks to give your eyes a rest. Even an hour of reading a book before bed instead of watching TV or your phone can give your eyes the time they need to recover before you jump into your next day.
  • Set your home workspace up the same way your in-office space would look. This will help to smooth the transition and keep distractions at bay.
  • Set a schedule that looks similar to your typical schedule and stick to it. As tempting as it is to hit the snooze button or stay up late catching up on your favorite show, finding this schedule will give you a sense of consistency in this constant state of change.
  • If you do need to rearrange your space to accommodate a new workspace, be sure to put your home back to how it was once you are done for the day. This will help you to leave work for the day and find the work-life balance we all need.
  • Keep your home clean, you’ll feel lighter and less distracted when all the clutter is cleared.

Keep Your Mind Active

It’s easy to start feeling uninspired or stuck in the same environment. A good way to negate this feeling is by keeping your mind busy in a mindful way. We have pulled together a couple of our favorite ways to practice mindfulness:

But Know When to Turn it Off

It can feel like our minds are just running these days with the what-ifs and the unknown. Giving your mind a break can work wonders on your mental health. Here are some ways we have found to turn it all off for a minute:

  • It can be hard to look away from the news these days but you would be surprised how much negativity and anxiety are ridden in the media you are consuming. Set a limit for yourself. Maybe you only check on the news for five minutes in the morning and five minutes in the afternoon. Limiting your media consumption will keep your mind focused on work.
  • Meditate. No really, try it! We love apps like Calm and Headspace to get you started. Just five minutes can change your mindset and turn your day around.
  • If meditation isn’t your thing, try journaling. Writing down our thoughts helps us to clear our minds and make sense of all the thoughts that fill our heads.

A Body in Motion Stays in Motion

If you’re like us and your commute looks less like yellow line to red line and more like bedroom to the living room you are probably feeling a little cooped up. I know I am missing my commute to work more than ever. Yes, it ate up 1.5 hours of my day but it gave me a chance to move my body and decompress from the day. Thankfully we have found a couple of other outlets to the same effect:

  • Go for a walk. This is one of the few excuses to leave your house, get some fresh air and move your body.
  • Many fitness studios and gyms have moved their classes online to keep their community moving. Clear a space in your home and get your whole family involved to break a sweat.
  • Set stand and posture reminders, to keep your body from staying in one place too long. Both of these are offered as a Google Chrome extension

Physical Distancing, Not Social Distancing

Technology has gotten a bad rep, but it’s times like these when I’m so thankful for the tools that we have to stay connected to one another. Check-in on friends and family more than you normally would. The simple question of, “how are you doing?” has so much more meaning now that we are forced to answer with something other than “good.” Call your loved ones and really listen, don’t try to fix or offer solutions, just listen to what they have to say. Don’t try and multitask. Just listen. You will find yourself more fulfilled at the end of each conversation knowing that we can help one and others get through this.

With all of that said, use your powers for good. Set a limit to the amount of time you spend on social media. It can be easy to get pulled into the world of others especially when it feels like there is nothing else to do. For ideas on what to do instead of surfing Instagram, see below…

Tap into Your Passions

From canceled social plans to shorter commutes it seems we have a lot of extra time on our hands. Use this time in a productive way. What is something you have been wanting to do but have been putting off? Take this time to change yourself for the better and get creative.

  • Care for plants, they are a good reminder that living things change and grow.
  • Learn a new language, we love Duolingo.
  • Get creative with what you have in your pantry and try out a new recipe.

This is a difficult time, but we believe from this we can grow stronger. With a little hard work and self-care, we will all get through this together. We are always here to help you grow beyond.

Happy Growing!

If none of the above is enough or if you or someone you love needs mental health assistance we encourage you to reach out to a therapist to talk through the change you are going through in a professional environment.

As COVID-19 pushes teams into remote, virtual workspaces, our “Staying Connected During COVID-19” series is here to help. Let’s commit to keeping ourselves, our families, and our communities safe, one step at a time. Follow us for tips on how we can further your mission together.

Kate Beacom's headshot

Kate Beacom

Account Executive Kate Struthers leads Beyond Definition's clients in the development and execution of successful brand-centric and integrated campaigns.

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