So, you’re stuck in quarantine. Or should I say shelter-in-place? You’re kids are home – all day, every day – and they’re getting on your last nerve. You’re running out of your favorite snacks, places to hide from the kiddos and reasons not to choke the life out of your spouse. You don’t know how much more of this you can take.
But the news updates are turning from bad to worse. Grocery shelves are being emptied faster than they can be stocked. Fear is running rampant turning the world upside down and there is no hint of when this thing is all going to end.
What are we supposed to do in times like these?
I have a few ideas:
1. Limit your social media intake.
It’s a given that our news feeds will be filled with information about the pandemic. We need that. But we’ll also find posts feeding our fears, condemning our leadership and encouraging panic. We don’t need that. Limiting your time on social media can help keep your emotions and your mood in check. Don’t worry. There are plenty of other things to do with your time. Play games with the kids. Take a walk. Read a book. Binge watch your favorite television show. Learn a new language. Be creative.
2. When you are on social media, make your posts positive.
Be a light in these dark times. We’ve all had our fill of reasons to panic, reasons to cry and reasons to lose hope. We need to see the silver lining. We need laughter. We need goofiness. We need fun. Be the positive message that brightens someone’s news feed.
3. Listen to your leaders.
Stay home. When you have to go out, observe social distancing rules. Wash your hands often. Be smart.
I know this is killing all you extroverts out there (Introverts like me are pretty much okay with it!) but there is a reason we have been asked to stay home and stay away from each other. It’s not an overreaction. It is a necessity and when all this is over, you’ll be very grateful you listened to the mandates.
4. Count your blessings.
Sure, you need a break from the kids. You’re dying for an iced mocha latte and all you have is decaf store brand coffee because it was all that was left at the grocery store. But let’s put this into perspective. You are home with your family, healthy and safe. So many others are not. So many others are putting themselves and their families at risk to care for those who are suffering. You have a lot to be thankful for.
What better way to spend your free time – talking to the source of all Joy, to the only One who knows our needs and who can meet each and every one of them. Talk to God about your stir-craziness. Talk to him about your frustrations with your kids. Tell Him about your fears. Pray for those who are sick. Pray for the medical professionals who are caring for them. Pray for provisions, for a cure, for healing. Pray for all those who are making decisions. Pray for the families who have lost loved ones. Just Pray!
And last but certainly not least…
6. Keep SMILING.
The SMILE is a very powerful thing. Never underestimate what it can do for you and for others.
Remember, there’s nothing in the social distancing mandate that prevents you from sharing a SMILE! Keep spreading those SMILES – it’s in these times that we truly need them.