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Tips to Deal with Stress During the Covid-19 Pandemic

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Some stress seems almost inexplicable. Doctors may tell us that we have some sort of chemical imbalance, but it is tough to rationalize something as abstract as a hereditary condition. Other types of stress are self-induced when we put too much pressure on ourselves at work, in our personal relationships and physical conditioning. But, sometimes the stress and anxiety we feel comes from an easily identifiable source for which an individual cannot take any of the blame. Financial recessions can hit the entire country like they did in 2008, natural disasters can occur like earthquakes and hurricanes, and on a rare occasion a worldwide health pandemic can shift all of our lives in directions we never imagined.

Businesses and people are losing money at a rapid pace as mayors, governors and the President increase social restrictions in an attempt to contain the spread of the Covid-19 virus. Beaches are being cleared, restaurants and bars are being told they can only offer drive-thru or delivery and schools are being closed. Self-quarantining families are not using Uber as much, they aren’t going to malls or doing many of the recreational activities that are part of their typical routines. Not to mention, the stock market is falling precipitously as investors move away from risk assets and elect to liquidate holdings rather than collateralize their positions.

Financial Stress

Businesses are losing revenue right now. Nobody is immune from the fears surrounding the novel coronavirus. Even food, sanitization products and medical supplies cannot keep up with the demand and the costs of hiring more people to produce more products and help with operations. But, the ones feeling the biggest financial impacts now are cooks, waiters, bartenders, uber drivers, and the employers of their respective businesses. Any business that depends on people gathering socially during off-work hours have seen business nearly vanish on them. So, what are these people supposed to do to make ends meet?

Hospitality jobs are ending with Covid-19, so what are people's alternatives to keep making money?

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The federal government is talking about issuing stress relief checks starting in April, so that could help. Each adult would receive $1,000 for themselves and another $500 per child if the federal government follows through on the support plan it is currently discussing. How long will that money last though? We do not know how long the pandemic will force people to quarantine. We must also consider that black swan events like this can have far reaching effects that cause people to change their typical spending habits permanently. Conserving money is important for all households while we navigate these difficult times

Conserving Money

It is time to conserve your money during the pandemic, so here are some ideas on ways to save up.

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If you are a small business owner, consider taking a line on a small business loan. Do what you can to increase your cash holdings. It is vitally important to know that banks and landlords understand the current problems people and businesses are facing and do not want to lose good clients. They depend on you making payments in order to keep their businesses going too. If you are afraid that rent or mortgage payments are going to eat quickly into your savings, forecast ahead and contact your lender or landlord. Let them know that you anticipate a cash crunch and find out what your options are. They know that this global disaster will not last forever and depend on you being there when it is over. This is a good way to control your finances and conserve your holdings.

If you still use cable, explore streaming services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, Disney Plus, HULU. The net costs of those subscriptions may be much less than paying your monthly cable bill. Take advantage of every discount that you possibly can. Look for promo codes or buy in bulk where you can to reduce your overall costs. Here are some other tips that can help you save money.

  • Cook at home, don’t order out
  • Shut off lights and unplug non-essential items to reduce your electric bill
  • Cancel gym memberships and do workouts at home or take jogs around your neighborhood
  • Don’t order unnecessary items online
  • Work from home as much as possible to cutdown gas expenditures from commutes

Finding Side Hustles

Finding ways to make extra money from home during the Covid-19 outbreak is important so you can keep making ends meet.

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Especially for waiters, bartenders or anyone that works in the hospitality sector to make some extra money, looking for new sources of income are important. Checkout sites like Fiverr or UpWork to find gigs that can make you a little extra money while staying safely at home. If you like writing or spend a lot of time on social media, take that knowledge and apply it to more than just your pass-time indulgences. E-commerce is likely to become more important than ever and so getting to know your way around online is vital to the future. Some of the skills you possess are important to online stores, you may just never have realized just how important.

Medical Stress

We all deal with medical stress regularly even when a health pandemic is not adding to it. Maybe you get chronic sinus infections, perhaps you have severe allergies or a condition that needs regular treatment. Maybe your concern is about someone you love or a close friend. People fall and break ankles or get into car accidents and they will continue to during the pandemic. So, how do we best deal with medical stress?

If You Have Covid-19

If you have contracted the Covid-19 virus or if you are experiencing symptoms of the virus, you should contact your medical provider right away. For many people the symptoms are mild, but for others (especially the elderly and people with underlying medical conditions) the symptoms of the virus can become severe enough that hospitalization is required. Being prepared by talking to your doctor and knowing where to go will help calm you down. Staying quarantined is also very important so that you do not infect other people. People do not talk much about the stress of worrying that they were the one to pass on the infection. These concerns add to the overall anxiety people are experiencing and so we all should know how to best prevent it.

If You are Worried About Getting Sick

If you think you may be sick but do not want to go to a doctor's office or the hospital during the Covid-19 pandemic, consider looking into telemedicine.

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If you are worried about getting sick, not just with the corona virus but with anything, then what do you do? Nobody is interested in going to the doctor’s office or a hospital, places where the virus is likely concentrated, at this time. Instead of avoiding dealing with a medical problem, discover what your alternatives are. Today there are telemedicine alternatives that are often part of your insurance anyways. You can see a doctor via a video chat from home or simply via a phone call depending on the severity of the problem. Sometimes the first aid supply you keep at home can be enough to take care of the problem. Drug prescriptions can be mailed to the house too. However, some problems will require a visit to a doctor anyways, so make sure to talk to your doctor to find the right course of action.

Social Distancing Stress

People are being told to keep 6 feet from people during the Covid-19 outbreak, which this sort of social distancing can be stressful.

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Medical professionals continuously talk about social distancing. They want you to stay 6 feet from anyone not in your quarantine circle. It is a smart thing to do, but it may come with some side effects. Socializing is vital to our mental stability. We cannot understate the value of a hug or physical contact. Much of the stress and anxiety we feel builds up when we are alone with only our own speculative thoughts. So, how do we deal with loneliness and boredom during quarantine? If you think about it, we are pretty lucky that this never-been-seen-before health scare is happening in 2020, an era of technology.

Feeling Lonely

If this happened 50 years ago, loneliness would be a much bigger problem. Today though, you can video chat with people on the other side of the world. With a tap on a smartphone app, your mom, dad, girlfriend, boyfriend, son, daughter, wife or whoever, could popup in high definition in mere moments. One of the silver linings to the virus is that it is not disrupting our 5G networks or broadband connections. Sometimes we simply need to share our thoughts on social media, reddit or in a blog to help us vent the emotional frustrations we are experiencing. It is more important than ever to let sunlight and fresh air into your home, and avoid lying in bed any more than necessary.

Getting Stir Crazy

Playing video games is just one way to entertain yourself while being quarantined in your home during the Covid-19 outbreak.

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You must go about your daily routines cleaning and organizing like you normally would. Embrace work and honing your skills during this time so that when you emerge, you are more than you were before. Educate yourself! But, once that wears away at you and it’s time for a mental break, here are a few more ideas:

  • Read fun books
  • Listen to audiobooks
  • Play video games
  • Try virtual reality
  • Run/walk/bike around your neighborhood making sure to keep 6 feet from others (take your dog with you)
  • Cook amazing meals
  • Do puzzles
  • Paint and make arts and crafts
  • Go swimming in your pool
  • Write a novel
  • Watch a movie or binge a show

Conclusion

Don’t let Covid-19 stress you out too much. The world needs you to keep your head, and this will eventually come to an end. Take precautions and stay safe. If anything, embrace this as an opportunity to tighten up your budget, become more tech and internet savvy, hone your skills and just generally educate yourself some more. The virus is very real, so please do not underreact, but if you are following the guidelines the government is laying out for all of us, you will be ok. Be a leader for those that need help and reassurance. The world will likely never be the same after this. Who will you be when this pandemic becomes a part of history?

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