How to Stay Positive, Healthy, and Connected in the COVID-19 Era.

Posted on March 19th, 2020 By in Life Hacks Read Time: 8 mins.

These are uncertain times, to say the least. While the world continues to slow to a halt, our communities continue to hunker down, for fear of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

For most Americans, staying mentally and physically healthy, whilst being cooped up at home, can be incredibly challenging. Today, we’re sharing ideas submitted by our own UNICO community so that together can shift our mentality from surviving to thriving in the face of this adversity. Read on to see tips on how to stay positive during COVID-19.

stay-healthy-during-COVID
This Unico Community illustration ‘surreal’ captures a sense of bewildered isolation that many of us have experienced.

The challenges we have all been facing because of the Corona Virus make for a daunting list.

Between the collapse of stocks and overall business uncertainty, food supply concerns, toilet paper shortages, and oh yeah- the health of our loved ones, the COVID era has incredibly stressful and downright frightening for almost ALL of us.

On top of that, our local and federal governments are encouraging social distancing, cancelling schools and closing local businesses to slow the spread of the virus.

…Leaving us all hunkered down, wondering what will come next.

Because most of us have realized it’s VERY easy to sit around watching the latest depressing news story, or scroll mindlessly through Tik-Tok videos to pass the time, we mobilized our UNICO community yesterday, asking:

What has helped YOU maintain a positive attitude during the COVID-19 pandemonium?

The amount of responses we have received has been overwhelming. (you can still submit yours here.)

If you take one thing from this post, it is that we CAN all thrive in the face of adversity and we are strong enough to face this.

Here is a selection of COVID-19 life hacks from our community on how to combat one of the first challenges of this pandemic – overcoming isolation:

How to Stay Connected.

They say complete isolation is the most severe form of punishment, and while many of us are lucky enough to be in the comfort of a home as opposed to a prison, many of us ARE dealing with some degree of feeling isolated.

Here are some of the beautiful ways our community is using this opportunity to get closer to people, even in isolation:

“This social distancing has brought us together by giving us time off from work to prevent the spread of the illness. Now we’re able to spend more time with one another. We busted out the Wii and started playing Just Dance and Mario Party the other night..this social distancing time spent with my family is bringing me back to my childhood that I have missed so much!!!” -Lisa

“I’m reaching out everyday to at least 2 friends or fam members to see how they’re doing & just let them know I’m thinking about them thru these crazy virus times!” -Sherrie H.

“My friends and I are having a remote game night. We’re all signing into google hangout and playing games from the comfort of our own homes.” -Kelsey B.

“Because I can no longer do ministry and visitation at a nearby nursing home, I pray earnestly for the precious patients that actually have become some of my best friends. In addition, I try to keep in touch w/ our 4 children and 5 beloved grandchildren. Prayer(staying in touch w/ my Creator and Redeemer) ALWAYS lifts me up–what could be better than that?!!!” -Joanna K.

“I’ve been able to work from home—so my team and I get on Zoom lunch calls where we can see each other (in our no makeup and pajama all-day glory) and just connect!” -Alison G.

“I’ve been trying to FaceTime friends and family members during dinner so it feels like we’re enjoying a meal together.” -Tess E.

“I am spending time with my family finally without rushing and planning on “what’s next” we’re taking it one day at a time and enjoying each other’s company; we go on walks every night before bed around the neighborhood which is great!” -Kristen W.

How to Stay Positive Mentally.

This section could be pages, and pages long. So many members of our community offered brilliant, and beautifully simple ways to help you stay mentally engaged and in high spirits during this time.

From maintaining a garden, to working on a new skill, to focusing on perspective, this section might be the most important of all.

Let’s see what the community had to say with regard to staying positive:

“Take time to be creative! Creativity isn’t reserved for paints and canvases. Maybe it’s getting creative with a recipe from all the food that’s about to go bad, or taking a digital masterclass on mixology, or creating an organization plan for your mail. The world is better when you create” -McKenzie B.

“I decided I would teach myself to knit! Finished my first chunky knit blanket today. Going to try a smaller knit with needles tomorrow!” -Alicia

“Prayer helps. During this time, I rely on God regardless of the world’s chaos and fear. Because God says Fear Not, for I am with you. Fear is not from God. So I pray, listen to worship music, rosary too, sometimes I’ll paradise God over small things like food or giving joy to others. Being kind during hard times is a test of my faith in him.💕😇” -Jane H.

“I’m spending lots of time caffeinating and hanging out with my kids and LOTS of Disney Plus. I also decorated for Easter early. The pop of color lifts my spirits a little bit!” -Brieanah D.

“Working in my garden keeps my mind positive and my heart happy!🌺” -Kelsey B.

“My boyfriend and I started a ‘financial stress’ list that has ways we can reduce costs and manage our budget while he is out of work due to the pandemic. Working together on this list was a good way to bond and it is helping us feel in control during a time when it’s so easy to feel out of control.” -Norma S.

“I am helping out at my local food bank, helping others makes me feel good.” -Diana

“We literally have an opportunity to save thousand of lives just by staying at home. Keeping that in perspective helps me stay positive during this time of self isolation and quarantine.” -Jonathan

“Allow myself to experience whatever emotions come up. It’s okay to feel anxious, confused, frustrated or even grateful. If the thoughts linger too long, share them with someone else.” -Taylor C.

“I give my 140lb new foundland lots of snuggles and enjoying cups of tea with the hubs.” -Allie P.

“I’m re-reading my favorite childhood book series: A Series of Unfortunate Events, and sending funny memes to my friends to make them laugh.” -Wendy B.

“To stay positive during the isolation I am reading a book and concentrating on spending time with my kids outdoors getting our garden ready for planting.” -Jessica D.

“Staying aware of what I DO have to be grateful for. I’ve been trying to remember all the times I wished I could stay home, have a break or get some rest. These are hard times, but there is beauty in every season!” -Meggan M.

“I’m teaching myself something new! How to bake my own bread!” -Kimberly

“Reading the Harry Potter series in its entirety. Lighting a candle and doing yoga on my work break” -Baylie S.

“Watched Liar Liar with my 13 year old boys. There’s a lot of sexual jokes in that movie that I had COMPLETELY forgotten about. At one point both boys had blankets over their heads while I wasn’t sure if I was laughing more at Jim Carrey or their embarrassment. Good times” -Heather H.

How to Stay Healthy Physically.

With gyms, studios, pools, and most public recreation spaces closed, we’ve all had to get seriously creative with our physical fitness.

Most of us are seeing more and more outdoor running than ever before- which is fantastic!

A good run triggers endorphins and gets us some precious fresh air that we aren’t getting while quarantined indoors.

But our community had some great ideas in addition to running that can help you stay fit during this time:

“Today I ran outside and set up my home gym in my basement! I have joined two Facebook groups for fitness during the quarantine.” -Chelsea T.

“My dog is really is helping me stay fit AND sane. Walking him at least twice a day!” -Margaret T.

“I found out that Peloton is doing a free 3 month trial of their app which has yoga, bootcamp, meditation, treadmill, cycling, and more! It’s a great way to stay in shape while gyms are closed.” -Rachel S.

“I dance! I put music on and dance in my kitchen. Always happy music-anything that makes me smile. Occasionally my kids will join me. My husband will come in and twirl me a few times and for a few minutes we just laugh and sing along to the music.” -Christina D.

“I’ve been keeping up with fun manual labor around the house that I know I can accomplish and be proud of, like I planted grass in my backyard and have been making sure to keep the waxy leaves off of it so it can grow. I live near the beach too so I’ve been going out just to enjoy it since they are empty and it’s warmer right now.” -Christina D.

I am homeschooling our kids which is all new and not easy! But I spent the last 4 days building them a new playset in our yard with my dad. I recently started using the Apollo protein (Chocolate peanut butter!) and the Yumino EAAs (pink pixie stick) which has helped me get through all the hard work. -Julie T.

“I’ve been going hiking and enjoying spring time and taking photos. There aren’t many people out on the trails so it’s nice and peaceful. I think it’s beautiful how after winter and everything just seems lifeless that green comes out of no where and trees begin to bloom. It’s given me some positivity in the circumstances I’m in.” -Abby H.

In conclusion…

As Bob Marley once said-

“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”

It’s clear to me from this exercise that our families, friends, and neighbors are strong, creative, and taking the challenges posed by COVID-19 head on.

Let’s continue to stick together, lean on each other, and use this time apart to grow together.