Choosing Action Over Anxiety During Covid-19Dec 02, 2020
COVID-19 hit fast and hard and the ripple effects will be felt for a long time to come. Many families have been significantly impacted by the pandemic: schools are closed, careers have been up-ended, lockdowns have left families isolated and frustrated, parents have become homeschool teachers, and in the worst of cases, family members and friends have been lost to Covid-19.
It’s normal to be stressed in this situation.
But it’s not okay to let your anxiety keep you from taking action to find solutions for your family.
We can’t control what’s happened and happening around us, but we CAN control how we handle things from here on out. What we do (or don’t do) is what’s going to determine how our family fares through this time of crisis.
We don’t have all the answers and we won’t pretend to, but what we can tell you is this - you can let this make you, or you can let this break you.
The choice is yours.
Here are 4 steps you can take to find relief for your family during the pandemic.
1) Clear your mind
First things first - you’ve got to clear the cobwebs.
You’ve got a lot on your mind. Likely, your head is spinning with worry, frustration and a loss of hope.
Have you ever heard the phrase “paralysis by analysis”? Basically, it means feeling overwhelmed to the point of shutting down because too much is happening around you.
When you hit that point, you aren’t thinking clearly. You need to do whatever it takes to center yourself so you can think rationally and make sound decisions.
Make sure you’ve gotten a good night’s sleep, fed your hangry belly, dressed for the day, and gotten some fresh air.
Once you do these things, you are in a much better headspace to look at the big picture and formulate a plan of action.
2) Set up for Success
You’ve taken the first, and most important, step in helping your family thrive in the face of hardship. You’ve done what’s necessary in order to take on this project with a clear head.
Well, now you’ve got to give yourself space to brainstorm the steps your family is going to take to overcome obstacles.
As a parent, you know finding pockets of quiet within your day doesn’t always come easy. It’s important that you set aside this time though, even if you have to get creative in making it happen.
Whatever you do, you need to buy yourself an hour or two with minimal interruptions to figure this out.
3) Make a Prioritized List
Now to the nitty-gritty.
It’s time to actually put a plan in place. You have a clear head, the kids are occupied; what next?
The first step is to do a massive brain drain. Get all those worries, frustrations and challenges out on paper. Write down EVERYTHING you can think of.
Worried about your mortgage? Write it down. Running low on energy? Write it down. Do you have a family member in the high-risk category? Write it down.
Now, you’ve got to let it sit for a minute. Take a break. Drink some water, replenish your snack stash (you know you need sustenance at a time like this!), and then come back with a fresh head.
After a quick break, it’s time to tease through the list and figure out what to tackle first. Determine solutions, create a plan of action (task) for each, and set a timeline.
Once you start putting things into an actionable plan, make sure each task is clear, achievable, and listed in order of importance.
Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize!
There you go. Literally as simple (note - we said simple, not easy!) as 1-2-3!
Now you’ve got a plan.
4) Do the Work
With a plan in place, the only thing left is to do the work. No, it’s not easy. But it has to be done.
Do you maybe need to cut some things from the budget? If you are struggling financially, this is a great place to start.
If making budget cuts isn’t enough, it’s time to take more drastic measures.
Call your mortgage company, utility providers, and creditors - everyone you pay money to each month. See what you can work out. Apply for assistance if necessary.
You can also contact churches, charitable organizations, and even reach out on social media. Our community has banded together to bring food and supplies to people who can’t afford it or can’t risk getting out amongst the general public. Many other communities across the nation are doing the same.
Do some research and see what resources you have at your disposal.
Are you facing a loss of income? Put your thinking hat on. It’s time to get creative.
If school closures mean that childcare is an issue, ask your boss if it’s possible to telecommute.
If working from home with kids underfoot is difficult, try adjusting your schedule so you can work early in the morning or late at night. Or prep activities they can do independently and complete your work in short bursts.
If your job has been downsized, you may need to consider another source of income. See if you can find remote work. Check job boards like Indeed and ZipRecruiter and use terms such as “remote” or “freelance” in your searches. Rat Race Rebellion and The Mom Project are also great sites catering specifically to the work-from-home crowd.
If working remotely isn’t the right fit, check into stores like Costco, Walmart, and Amazon. These places are hiring like crazy to handle the influx of new business coming their way.
If childcare is an issue, see if you can work opposite your spouse. If that’s not an option, reach out on social media and see if an out-of-work teacher is available to keep your child and/or homeschool. Or if there’s another mom in a similar position, maybe you two can work opposite shifts and alternate watching each other’s kids.
Bottom line, you’ve got to think outside the box.
Nothing about this situation is normal. Therefore, all conventional rules go out the window. Right now, we’re thinking about survival - that of our family and the community that surrounds us.
Remember….this isn’t forever. Let’s come together and do what we need to do in the short term, hard as it may be.
Action vs. Anxiety
Which will you choose? Ultimately, it’s your call.
Here’s our take.
Don’t just sit back and wait to see how this all plays out. Be proactive. Take the right steps NOW in order to make sure your family is taken care of.
Action is the key to overcoming anxiety.
Please be sure to share with others who may be struggling as well. We’re here for you and we’ve got lots more to come on this ever-changing situation.
Ivy Wild Kids is passionate about helping families embrace and organize the wild of ADHD, so children can realize their full potential and families can live happier and healthier lives!
We are so excited you found us and look forward to seeing you in our community!