This transcript has been taken from my latest podcast episode which you may prefer to listen to >>>here<<<
I was going to open with a chatty, ‘Hi, how are you?’ but I think it’s pretty safe to say there’s no straight answer for that question right now. Most of us are all feeling the entire range of emotions – sometimes all at once. Thanks, Covid-19.
In the midst of work drying up, kids home from school, shops low on stock and the world on indefinite pause, digital businesses and content producers have really stepped up. There’s a ton of fabulous information on how to get through this unprecedented time and what feels like squillions of free resources to access. So much in fact, it’s easy to feel a little overwhelmed by it all.
In light of this, I thought it might be helpful to have a few ideas of how to stay level-headed while dealing with children under your feet and on your Zoom calls, working from home, worries about the future of your business/health/your parents/your partner/everything.
This is mostly about mindset and mental health and aimed at those who aren’t rushed off their feet with a booming business. I’ll be sharing more blogs with other practical tips on selling in the time of coronavirus, taking your business online and the tools I use to run 365Day Social for those who need them.
We don’t know how long this is going to take to play out. It could be weeks, it could be months. Things are changing on a daily basis right now so the very best thing you can do is adjust your expectations and take it one day (or half day) at a time.
If you’re experiencing a slowdown in work and have children to care for, my best advice is to make your life simple by not expecting anything of anyone – at least for the first week of isolation. Lofty ideals of writing novels, learning new languages, doing every bit of DIY that’s been on your to-do list for years or having a full school-day timetable are not only unrealistic, they are adding more pressure to you all. Take some time to adjust to a new rhythm of life and feel your way. There may be time for these things but don’t set unrealistic goals for yourself.
If possible, scale back your news watching. Turn off notifications, give yourself set (and strict) times to scroll social media. For all its brilliance, it can exacerbate anxiety and contribute to overwhelm. How many articles do you need to read about coronavirus? How many freebies do you need to sign up for? (With that in mind, I’m sharing just one for each category below.)
Just as I urge my clients to do, have a think about yourself in terms of pain points. What problem do you need to solve? It might be easing your stress, keeping your children entertained, safeguarding your work, doing exercise now your gym has closed… Start there and don’t think about the rest until you need to.
This isn’t about scheduling the hell out of every second, but it is important for anyone working at home with some else. Perhaps space is in short supply as your partner is unexpectedly there or there are children to care for. It’s important that everyone is clear when they are working and from where, which is not just about getting the work done, it’s about co-existing in harmony. Try to find a routine that works for you, which may include a lunchtime run (while still permitted) to escape from each other’s pockets or reduced time in your workshop to share other responsibilities. The more upfront you can be about your needs now, the less stress in the long run.
It’s a biggie, trying to stay calm amid current circumstances. Quietening your mind with meditation is more useful than ever but can be really tricky unless you are well practiced. I’m not, so I use guided meditations.
London acupuncturist George Monkhouse has opened up a couple of his courses/resources for free, Emotional Mastery and Vitality Meditations. Find them here.
My favourite yoga app Down Dog has waived its subscription fees until 1 April. You can choose from lots of styles (including chair yoga for limited mobility), at multiple levels, for a variety of lengths. Again, try not to overstretch yourself, literally and figuratively. Do a little of what you can and your body will thank you.
If you’re spending more time at home, there’s a high chance you’ll want to create some extra space. This is a great time to sort some of the clutter and tackle all those bits that build up and cause annoyance at the best of times. I think we can all agree this is not the best of times… The Declutter Hub are my go-to on this. (I must point out that they are a client, but I think they are brilliant at what they do). Lesley and Ingrid have a wealth of experience and knowledge, free resources such as their podcast and super-low-cost options too (courses from $19).
I really like the straight-talking support of Avital, aka The Parenting Junkie. As a parent support and homeschooler, she has created the free Play Pandemic Guide, which collates a lot of her resources in one. With am/pm meditations for you, ideas of how to create a schedule and valuable resources around play for your children (including her free-for-a-while Play Guru course), you might just be able to thrive as a family.
This is where social comes into its own. So many communities have sprung up for support in this time, and existing ones are more valuable than ever. A couple of my favourites are Doing It For The Kids perhaps the nicest, most useful, most supportive group I’ve ever joined on FB) and the very useful at this time ‘Anti-viral work for freelancers and small businesses’.
Instagram has also blossomed into something lovely and supportive influencer @comedowntothewoods has created a whole new account @timeforachat – a place for conversation, humour and tutorials on how to get the best from Instagram.
I know that was three suggestions, but I couldn’t choose a favourite!
Again, this might be seen as quite ‘woo’ for some people but in times of crisis, they can be really helpful for keeping you on an even keel.
It can be as simple as ‘This too shall pass’ – one of the simplest yet most effective lines in dealing with trauma – or ‘It will all be OK in the end’. Maybe you want an emotional pep-talk from your inner cheerleader. ‘I can do hard things’ or ‘We’ll get through this’. It’s good to focus on the positives with a quick mental rundown of the things you can be grateful for, even if that’s not a mantra as such. That mental pick-me-up can help reframe your mind’s wanderings rather than spiralling off into self-doubt and catastrophising.
Even if things seem bleak, there will be opportunities in places we aren’t even aware of yet. I’m here to help wherever I can and am offering FREE calls to talk anything social media related. No hassle, no obligation, no selling. I have limited availability as am balancing the paid work I still have, but if you want to ask me any questions around ads and social strategy during this time, I’m here for you.
Book a time here >>> https://FayeMorgan.as.me/letschat