Making the Most of Quarantine Time and Taking Care of Your Mind during Coronavirus
All over the world, we are all journeying through very uncertain, uncharted waters because of the Coronavirus Pandemic.
The virus and efforts to slow its spread have made many things unknown and out of our control as individuals right now. But if the threats of Covid-19 – the isolation and other limitations of social distancing aka “quarantine,” the impacts on or complete loss of a job, income, or business, or fears about getting infected with this novel coronavirus itself – have you down or feeling a lot of anxiety, I hope I can help you to shift some of your thinking and beliefs so you take control of everything you can control, make the most of this time, and be ready to kick ass on the other side of this pandemic.
Risk and Threat of the Virus
The loss of life to Covid-19 is very sad, and it’s certainly important to give our hospitals and healthcare workers enough breathing room to take care of the very ill and keep themselves healthy, too – not overwhelming the healthcare system is a huge part of why “flattening the curve” of coronavirus infections has been made so important in the form of social distancing and limiting in-person business to essential businesses only in much of the U.S. and the world.
But it’s also important for our mental and emotional health during this time to have perspective in mind: many, many people die every day of the year, and getting in your car still carries with it a far higher risk of dying or ending up in a hospital than this coronavirus poses. And you’re probably not getting in your car as much right now or engaging in a multitude of other out-of-the-house activities that carry natural risk, so in a way, you’re safer than ever right now.
Both risk and death are an unavoidable part of life, and, especially if you’re healthy, your actual risk of getting a serious case of Covid-19 is still very low relative to all the other risks out there. And while our hearts should go out to everyone who’s lost to this virus and who loses someone to it, it can be helpful to again keep the perspective in mind that an average of 150,000 people die worldwide every day of the year.
If you’ve lost your job or your income or your future has been threatened, that sucks. But set backs and unfortunate events are part of life, and the downs can actually be where the gold is if you let it be.
Opportunity in the Challenges Themselves
As Sam, one of our coaches, said at the start of Coronavirus becoming a pandemic and starting to hit home in LA, how you respond in times of adversity says a lot about your relationship to life and how you move through it. If fears or other emotional overwhelms have been predominant for you during the pandemic, don’t be hard on yourself for it, but do try to see it now as an opportunity to get stronger emotionally, in how you get through adversity, and in how solution-oriented and resourceful you are – more on that last part later.
Many of us have never had to deal with a truly challenging time in our greater worlds before – being asked to go to war or make wartime sacrifices, a truly severe economic collapse (2008’s recession was tough for some, but not quite like this, or a health crisis like this one.) And let’s be honest – the relative level of comfort and security of American and most Western society life running smoothly, and all the continuing development of technology that’s made life easier has in many ways made us soft, entitled, taking our high quality of life for granted, and making it easy to feel like the small stuff in life is an existential crisis.
So this time can be a real opportunity to grow as an individual, improve your grounding, and show yourself you can handle more adversity than you thought. This time could just serve you for the rest of your life.
The World Coming Together
I’ll come back to that thought, but I want to talk about some feel-good aspects of all this, too. It’s very inspiring to me how much the planet is coming together on this. In so many ways! Think about all the great minds in global leadership, healthcare, science and medicine, and business that are putting their heads together on this right now.
Think of all the innovation, creativity, and generosity people from these different walks of life are expressing. The same for your average citizens and neighbors, helping each other out more often; helping look after more vulnerable people in their neighborhoods like the elderly and people with weakened immune systems. Definitely think of all the heroes in healthcare and so many essential businesses helping us survive and fight this virus.
So many awesome stories big and small are coming out every day, and happening around the world even as you read this.
Spend some time looking up “Coronavirus good news” if you need a pick-me-up. What you’ll find will probably blow you away because there’s a lot of it.
Limit Your Covid News Consumption to the Facts
And speaking of news, do keep yourself informed of the facts and updates that actually affect you and regulations and advisories in your area once or twice a day, but don’t watch cable news or read dark commentary about the virus, especially not stuff making terrible projections for the future.
Stick to the factual, straight to the point sites and articles and then move on with your day. There’s nothing but negativity and unhelpful stress to your immune system to be gained from reading apocalyptic crap.
Creativity and Innovation
As the old saying goes, necessity is the mother of invention. Many innovations are happening right now that will both help us be better prepared in the future and just move society and our world forward in general.
Even creative ways of socializing while social distancing are being utilized and expanded – things like virtual hangouts, shared entertainment like group movie viewings and DJ sessions, business and career networking, even virtual dating are not only helping people cope, but also opening more doors for the future. You can even use this time to potentially strengthen connections with family and friends that had slipped. Human connection is certainly important, so play with all the tools out there like Zoom, and take advantage of this time to grow your connections with people.
Make a Conscious Choice for How You Spend Your Time
Now, there’s nothing wrong with enjoying some more time with movies or your entertainment of choice or just relaxing in general – we all need that at times – but if you aren’t working right now, and even if you are but you’re not satisfied with part of your life, it benefits you to take a little time to ask yourself exactly how you want to spend this time at home and where you want to be on the other side of this quarantine.
Make your decisions consciously rather than just “doing whatever”…even if some days, you decide to do just that and totally relax. This is especially true if you might need – or want – a new job or career change.
If you want to take in some movies, check out the list Sam put together: Movies for Your Growth and Spirit During Covid-19 “Quarantine”
Opportunity in Quarantine
When it comes to how you spend your social distancing time, the question I want you to ask yourself is, who do you want to be right now…and after this virus?
There’s so much you can do with this time to grow and move towards things you want. Whether it’s:
-income in the immediate future
-a new job, or considering a career change that will be more rewarding and give you more financial freedom
-a better diet
-improving your health and fitness
-a better dating life or relationships
-learning a new language or hobby
-reconnecting with old hobbies or projects you’d always wanted to do
-personal development in general
-or checking in with what’s important to you in life and how you’re prioritizing those things
This time can be such an opportunity to focus in on any of these things and really come out a stronger, more fulfilled person.
In 2020, there are so, so many online resources – many of them free, and even more being made free during coronavirus – to support you in whatever you want to do. Most of it’s just a Google or YouTube search away.
We just completed a free 3-week webinar series ourselves to support people’s minds and goals through this time (we may have more coming so keep an eye out), and I’ve seen universities offering free online classes lately.
There are so many free resources to learn how to improve your job skills and hiring attractiveness, learn how to make money online (just be cautious about people selling you on “quick and easy” solutions and shortcuts – there’s always gonna be time and effort involved in getting quality results) and try to learn about a job or industry you want to be in.
Josh, and Forbes Finance Council member, Jonathan Turner, did episodes on our webinar series on managing your finances, investing, and building wealth now and for the future. YouTube and Instagram have tons of free diet and exercise videos, and more than ever, online trainers are making even more resources for home, now equipment workouts available for free while you’re stuck at home. It’s a great, great time to work on your health and fitness.
Take Care of Your Emotional Health
Along with that, it’s a great time to take on or expand your emotional health with habits like meditation and allowing/releasing (emotional processing): How To Release and Build Up Your Confidence and Self-Esteem – This kind of internal work is some of the best stuff you can do to work on your confidence and self-esteem while you’re stuck at home.
And as I mentioned, there’s even a lot of virtual dating events that are great practice…and you could even meet someone you want to date in real life after the social distancing restrictions ease up. It’s also a great time to hop on dating apps like Tinder and practice having fun flirting and talking to women while the pressure feels lower.
Take-aways for Your Time Staying at Home
I’m not saying that every day will be fantastic and everything will be easy from here on. I’m not saying, if you are in a tough situation job-wise, that the solution will be effortless. (Keep your mind open to the possibility with all the aforementioned tips, that solutions, progress, and success could be easier than you think right now.)
I don’t want you to deny how you really feel right now, either. Do be honest with yourself and let yourself feel it – do some releasing on it – but then put more of your focus on what you want out of this time, what you want after, and what the next step in that direction is. And try to embrace the challenges of this pandemic as the great opportunity to grow – or even just to take care of yourself and your mind – that it is.
Fearless founder, Brian Begin, specializes in making dreams come true: the dating and success coach, relationship expert, author and motivational speaker is in the business of helping students build a firm foundation of confidence and get underneath the layers of social conditioning and (often unconscious) fears they’ve picked up throughout life to find their most authentic, fearless selves.