I’ve seen a few posts floating around in the media telling people how best to deal with the current Covid-19 situation and I’ve seen just as many posts pointing out that this is a crisis and not necessarily a time to build new skills/ bake banana loaf until the sun goes down/ Marie Kondo the living be-Jesus out of your drawers.
There are lots of emotions flying around and this little space allows me to document mine, so I thought I’d share with you how I’ve been feeling.
Reminder: though we are all in the same boat, we won’t all feel/cope in the same way.
This is not the time to get my bikini body ready.
GIRL, if you are trying to get that bikini body ready – STOP RIGHT NOW. Your bikini body is already here. I have been doing Chloe Ting workouts and yoga daily, I’ve been eating healthily and, heck, I’ve put on more weight. I felt super bummed about it and then I realised – now is not the time. Physical health is important – but don’t destroy your mental health in achieving it. I haven’t left this flat in 7 days, I don’t do my daily exercise outside because people here are (crazy and) ignoring the 2 metre guidelines, so I don’t want to risk it.
Our goal for this summer should be to emerge from this national/international crisis sane and well. Bikini body comes second.
Feeling like I’ve achieved nothing today is OK
There are plenty of people out there to tell you exactly how to spend your social distancing time and, as lovely as that is, you surviving this is enough. You don’t have to learn how to do yoga, make a banana loaf, declutter your room, deep clean your kitchen, donate to charity, run 5K or start an open university course (which is mega discounted if you DID want to do that). You are allowed to just exist, to simply survive and to allow yourself the comfort, the break, the opportunity to breath – this has been forced upon us.
Even if I am not close to people geographically, I can still be close to people emotionally
Living away from my family has made me feel really helpless at times. Even though I can’t do food shops for my grandparents or help out physically, I have found real comfort in sending post cards/ letters to the people I love. In times like these, a postcard or even an e-card (Moonpig actually offer these for 99p!) can really brighten someones day. There is something so special about receiving a physical card. I’ve sent quite a few, whether its to grandparents, best friends working on the front lines or even my Dr friends graduating early. Which leads me on to my next point:
Thank the freakin’ lord for FaceTime/ Skype/ HouseParty/ MessENger
I have seen a lot of comparison between Covid-19 and the world wars, and, though I think it’s a little far fetched, it makes me so thankful for the availability of FaceTime, Skype, HouseParty and Messenger. The postal service is doing a fantastic job, but it’s not like that is the only way to communicate with loved ones. We have the opportunity to check in with people and even physically see them.
Every week my family and I do a quiz, with all my cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents and even the dogs! I thank my lucky stars that we have instantaneous contact with family. I know they’re safe and well which makes this process so much easier.
Things are going to go wrong – tis the way of technology
Anyone struggling to take part in that meeting on Microsoft Teams/ Skype – I feel you. But we’ve got to take it in our stride. There is an awful lot of people trying to use this technology all at once and sometimes it crashes, and sometimes your computer restarts randomly or instals something without permission spontaneously.
Remember: You’re doing your best, that’s all that matters.
Feeling overwhelmed emotionally in this time is A-OK
Everywhere we look there is Covid-19 – be it social media, the TV, newspapers – it’s everywhere. These updates are important, but they can be harrowing. I, myself, have stopped watching the news, I simply watch the “highlights”, the bit that tells me the key information, purely because I found I was becoming really depressed.
I read somewhere, on a ‘tips for working from home’ blog, that having the news on in the background helps. Well, not for me. It made me feel SO low. I appreciate we shouldn’t stick our heads in the sand, so I watch the updates, I read the headlines on BBC, I watch Borris’ speeches – but I do not have the news on all day.
I find that the statistics and individual stories of those that have died overwhelms me. So I avoid it, for the sake of my sanity.
I mustn’t feel guilty that I’m not at work… this is national, not personal
I feel like this needs to be emphasised more. I have asthma and so was sent home 2 days before everyone else in my workplace and I felt like such an inconvenience. But lets be real, this is not a “me” thing, this is an international thing. This is unprecedented. So do your best, but do not feel guilty for being at home. It’s what we have been told to do, it’s what keeps us safe.
Working from home is not the same as working from work.
This is something I feel really strongly about. It’s different working from home, especially if you’re used to being in a workplace environment. The chats/ meeting/ breaks that divide your day and add routine are not there. So it’s really important to make sure you structure your day and allow yourself a break.
I’m used to a really structured day so sitting at a desk with not human contact for 9 hours makes me a lil loopy. So I have a routine going:
7.30: Up and out of bed – straight into a workout/ yoga
8.00: Flick the kettle on and wake Jack up. Make porridge on the hob and make a filter coffee.
8.10: Sit on the balcony with Jack, eating breakfast and getting that caffeine kick.
9.00: Dressed and ready to work at our desks.
10.30: Tea break.
12.30: Luuuuunch, accompanied by a Friends episode – we’ve been loving chicken noodle soup of late.
13.30: Back to work.
15.30: Snack time – we’ve been getting into the Rivita Crackerbreads and philadelphia cheese (a lil hack from WeightWatchers – cracker breads are ridiculously low calorie!)
18.00: Clock off, followed by dinner and chill.
I hope this has made you feel less alone in the minefield of emotions that have come along with Covid-19 and that you are all keeping safe!
If you take anything away from this let it be that: simply surviving this national crisis is OK. This chapter is unprecedented, confusing and takes a toll emotionally.
You’re doing fab.