Covid-19 Response

NOTE: SCROLL DOWN TO SEE TIPS AND RESOURCES.

Hello everybody, I hope all of you are well.

This time of uncertainty has affected many people in different ways. In order to help alleviate the pressure, I am offering individuals a FREE 1-hour online session where we can discuss stress and anxiety, tips on how to cope, how to alleviate boredom, how to deal with children and homeschooling (yes, I have homeschooled my son while living in Bermuda), activities, alternative income possibilities, etc.

To book, please click use this direct link, choose your time zone, schedule a date and time and follow the simple instructions. You will receive an automatic confirmation email with my Zoom meeting room link. I will take one appointment per day, between the hours of 12:00 noon to 5:00 pm AST (Bahrain time), from now until June 30, 2020. Let me know if you require a different time and I will try to accommodate. Alternatively, you can contact me privately to book.

Please note that I cannot find anyone a job, etc., but I can offer methods to help one cope with the situation at hand.

COVID-19 APP (Bahrain only)
I just found out today that there is an app that lets you know if you have come in close proximity to someone who has been diagnosed with the virus (in Bahrain). You can download it from the Google Store here. FOr iOS, search for the “BeAware Bahrain” app in the iStore as I’m not sure if it’s available for this platform.

COVID-19 COPING TIPS

Safety

While I don’t claim to be an expert on safety, I feel that these any tips page would be incomplete without mentioning at least the basics:

  • Do your best to follow safety guidelines provided by professionals and valid sources.
  • Keep informed: check and/or follow your local/federal news channels. There’s a lot of misinformation being disseminated through various sources such as social media, so it’s best to always double-check new statements and claims.
  • Not everyone can stay home, but if you can, please do so.
  • If you cannot stay home, take every precaution possible.
  • The most common safety procedures include wearing a mask, gloves, frequent hand washing, using hand sanitizer, social distancing, no face touching, etc.
  • MASKS: If you cannot find masks, you can seek videos that show how to make home-made ones. There are numerous ways to do this, but here’s an example (scroll down for instructions that don’t require any sewing). I have made my own with a fabric handkerchief and two elastics; vacuum cleaner filters (or similar) can be cut and used inside the cloth – contact me for instructions! Understand that nothing will come close to an N-95 mask, but something is still better than nothing…
  • Know the symptoms. Inform yourself through one of the numerous valid health professionals and sources. This could save lives.
  • Order supplies online as opposed to going out to get them. Everything can be delivered – take advantage of these services (many at no additional cost, or very low cost). Take necessary safety precautions when receiving the goods: search online for complete info.

In General

  • Dig up and start that “To Do” list. One thing at a time, no pressure, no rush. Just do it – it will be much worse if you don’t and end up with the same list after it’s all over 🙁
  • How about starting your spring cleaning – how convenient that it’s actually spring!
  • Re-organize closets and drawers. I actually found several “lost” items 🙂
  • Start and/or finish that DIY project(s). Fix little things around your home.
  • Always wanted to start a hobby? How about now? If you have nothing specific in mind, you can search online where hundreds of ideas are waiting…
  • Make a list of everything you are grateful for. Every little thing counts. We may not realize what we have until we start such a list. I start every day being grateful for three things in my life and I add to my list every day.
  • Here’s something my husband and I started doing: on individual square post-it notes, we write whatever we would have liked doing that day, that evening, etc. When we are able to go outside again, we will pick one (blindly) and do whatever is written down. This covers creativity, fun and spontaneity all at once!
  • Miss someone? Give them a call. That’s right, I’m talking about a real voice call. No need to worry about charges and fees since there are so may free voice/video apps around.
  • Reconnect with old friends and family. You might have grown apart for various reasons, and that’s OK, but if you’ve been meaning to reconnect, there’s no better time than now. If you’ve been angry at them, then know that “forgiveness is a gift you give yourself.”
  • For those who miss the gym, there are a myriad of ways you can continue exercising. Look it up! You can download an app that suits your needs. No need for fancy equipment (unless you’re competing, lol), as you can use a variety of household items such as heavy books, skipping ropes, stairs (or a home-made step of sorts), etc. Please take the necessary safety precautions, of course.
  • Take care of yourself – physically, emotionally, psychologically, mentally, and spiritually. Aim to do one special thing for yourself per day. It doesn’t have to be big or to take a lot of time, but it has to be something you sincerely enjoy. This is a habit I recommend adopting at any given time!
  • Hair and Makeup: Now’s the time to experiment with new hairdos and makeup techniques. OK, so maybe not a great idea to cut your hair if you’ve never done it before, but there are tons of cool hairstyles you can try out. Be creative, have fun!
  • Sweat pants are great but can get boring over time… Get dressed up during the weekend, as if you’re going out. Do your hair, full makeup for the ladies, full grooming for the men. Looking good is a known aspect of feeling good. Try it!
  • Turn the music up and dance like no one’s watching – no one is! (please be mindful of your neighbours and the noise level!)
  • Start that art project if you have all the required components. If not, be creative!
  • Do you have room for a garden? Even small indoor gardens are becoming more popular. They’re not only fun to create but healthy, easily sustainable, inexpensive to start and maintain, not to mention that they generate food products with the potential of lowering your grocery bill.
  • Still bored? Embrace it as a welcomed wave of peacefulness. Perception is everything and makes a difference in how you feel.
  • Check out online volunteering opportunities – they can sure use our help at this time. Have you checked out the One% app yet?
  • See the “Stress and Anxiety” section for additional ideas!

For Couples

  • If you already have a strong relationship, this is a good time to deepen the connection. If you have felt disconnected in the past, this is a good time to reconnect.
    • There are numerous exercises and fun games to help couples to connect or reconnect. I have a few of my own, contact me for details!
  • Make a list of all the things you appreciate of each other.
  • Make a list of all the things you appreciate in life.
  • Play cards and games – real cards and games, not online!
  • Make a list of conversation starters with topics you each enjoy. Pick one a day. Sit and chat!
  • Take turns reading to each other.
  • Have two spa nights: one for him, one for her. Do this on separate nights so that each can fully enjoy their special time.
  • Plan a date night, or date nights, lol. Set the mood with candles, incense and music. Get dressed up, cook or order a special meal, have fun!
  • Have some guilt-free alone time : )

Stress and Anxiety

  • Do your best to keep fear out – this doesn’t accomplish anything and may even aggravate the situation since “we experience what we focus on.” For more details and clear explanation, please book a free session!
  • Worrying about anything is counter-productive. Use the same energy to stay positive or to find solutions (depending on your source of worry).
  • Acquire ways that will help you tone down your fear/stress/anxiety. This is not as difficult as it sounds. Book a free session!
  • Know that while things may not return to exactly the way they were before (and that might be a good thing), this issue will eventually dissipate and disappear.
  • Practice Gratitude and Mindfulness – it really works. Really. Book a session for more info!
  • Now’s a good time to take up meditation, yoga, or any other similar practices you may have wanted to try but didn’t have a reason or time for. There are many apps and YouTube videos on these topics.
  • Read a book. Yes, this may sound silly, but sitting quietly with a book in hand often calms the mind and the inner being.
  • Strengthen your circle of friends (virtually, of course). Support is essential. Everybody is going through the same thing but might be coping in different ways. Keep your communication channels opened (without, of course, becoming a source of stress for anyone) – you might be surprised at how beneficial emotional support can be, and even more surprised at how helpful you might be for someone else!
  • This is a good time to start journaling. If you like writing, it’s a good way to put things into perspective.
  • Practice introspection: get to know yourself, what makes you tick, and why things stress you out. Feel free to contact me.
  • Book a free appointment with me – let’s chat about it.

Loss of income

  • Seek information on which finance-related resources are available locally. Some governments are offering various forms of financial relief.
  • Some charities and groups are offering assistance.
  • Assistance may not be in the form of money, but can include shelter, clothing, essentials, and/or food.
  • Seek ways to make money outside of your usual employment realm. This can be hard to do, but keeping in mind that it’s a temporary situation, it can provide a quick fix solution if you are in dire straights (desperate). Here are a few examples:
    • I heard of someone who used their car to start a (temporary) delivery service for those who needed groceries and other items that were not readily available on the usual online shopping apps.
    • I know someone who started teaching online. Practically anything can be taught online!
    • Are you an app developer/coder? Great time to advertise your services. I’m looking for someone right now (Android and iOS)!
    • If you’re a social media expert, you can manage social media accounts. People pay for this!
    • If you have a sewing machine or if you sew manually, make and sell masks!
    • If you can repair PCs, laptops and electronics, this could be a good time to offer your services, especially if you can do the work remotely.
    • You can teach hair, makeup and mani-pedi techniques online.
    • Write blogs on what you know. There are many free blog platforms and you can set yourself up to sell full articles to magazines.
    • These are only a few examples but there are numerous things one can do, using their knowledge and resources.
  • Can you turn your hobby into a source of income? You might be an avid knitter or woodworker who can now sell their products online.
  • Take this time to upgrade your skills. This could be a brand new skill or an advanced course in what you already do – there are many online resources that offer free (or heavily discounted) courses – some even come with a certificate!
  • Take this time to start the business you always wanted to start, or at least to look into it so that you are ready once things get back to “normal”.
  • As a last resort, you can sell those items that have been kicking around or that are not on your priority list at the moment. For those who are in a country where pawning is available, this might be a viable solution to getting some extra cash.
  • Last but not least, contact me to brainstorm about how you can use your skills to possibly make money. I’ve been doing this since 1992!

HOMESCHOOLING / CHILDREN / FAMILY TIPS

  • Following a schedule helps direct both the student’s and the parent’s time. It doesn’t have to be the same as the school’s schedule and it can be in a more general way, but it helps to have something in place. Example:
    • 9am to 10am: Homework and previous day review
    • 10am to 10:20am: Break
    • 10:20am to 11:30am: New lessons
    • 11:30am to 12:00noon: Lunch
    • 12:00noon to 1pm: New lessons
    • 1pm to 1:20pm: Break
    • 1:20pm to 2:30pm: New lessons
    • 2:30pm to 3pm: Questions and homework assignment
  • Weekly quizzes and tests can help motivate the student to study more seriously, regardless of whether the results are valid with the school or not 🙂
  • Establishing a reward system can help motivate the student to make an effort (different rewards work differently with different individuals depending on what they value).
  • If more than one student is at home, the eldest one can be assigned a (minor) supervision task. This is a great way to encourage leadership skills. Give the youngest one a fun “special task” so that he/she doesn’t get left out.
  • Use a chore jar to ensure that at least one chore a day is performed. Can be used in conjunction with rewards. Make it fun!
  • This is a great time to share that special talent you have with your child/ren, such as sewing, cooking, mechanics, electronics, computer, art, finances, makeup, etc.
  • Find the board games that got buried in your closet. Play as a family!
  • Set up a scavenger hunt (in the house, of course). I used to (my son is all grown up now) make a set of charades that gave clues to where each item was hidden. So much fun. Contact me for details!
  • Use mobile phone or computer time constructively – download fun learning games.
  • Insist on eating dinner together, as a family, at the dining room table, no phones, no TV. Talk to each other nicely 🙂
  • Are your communication styles compatible? Do they engender calm discussions or fan the flames? Book a free session to chat about this topic if it’s a sensitive issue in your home.
  • Have some guilt-free alone time : )
  • As a point of interest, I have a method that helps younger children (or even adults) to learn how to read. I used it when my son was 6 years old, after his teacher called me to tell me that he was “way behind” in his reading skills. I spent one weekend with him using this method and the same teacher called me back the next Monday to ask me what I had done because he was now reading “big words.” It works, contact me.
  • There are many homeschooling resources online – search until you find what you want!

There is so much more to add! I hope this has helped someone, somewhere, in some way. I appreciate feedback if you feel so inclined and additional resources if you have any. Stay safe!

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