Normalcy in times of Corona
Happy New Year everyone!
2020 was a strange year would be the understatement of the century. Unfortunately, the world is still nowhere close to a normal. Those of us here in the Netherlands & Europe in general are in the throes of a lockdown again with shops, restaurants and schools closed atleast until end Jan. As pandemic fatigue sets in, we are all looking for glimmers of normalcy in 2021.
We wanted to share some of the things that have helped us keep ourselves sane.
Safe socializing & supporting local businesses
We are allowed to have a maximum of 2 adults in 1 household per day in the Netherlands. Once a month, we try to invite and/or visit friends for a few hours in the evening on a Friday. We have some drinks, the kids play and we order food from a local restaurant so that we can do our best to keep them in business. We ensure social distancing - occupying separate chairs. It has given all of us some much needed warmth and comfort. We started this in the summer and found these to be the most uplifting experiences we have had.
Dress up for work from home
So many people are working from home that the boundaries of life have completely blurred. We found that getting dressed up as if we were going to work helped a lot in setting some boundaries. Every evening, we would then change into home clothes like we would when were going out to work pre- pandemic. An appropriate attire also helps with video calls that have taken over our lives and keep the work wardrobe in rotation.
Keep school routines alive for home schooling
I have a 7 year old daughter and she is home schooling right now. We have tried to maintain a similar routine as her school as much as possible. We encourage her to take breaks at the same time as school and follow her school routine. This has helped in a way that the days do not just blend into each other
We have had pretty grey weather since mid Dec in the Netherlands, add to that the dreariness of the pandemic - it is a recipe for feeling low energy and lethargic. We have found that stepping out once a day, no matter the weather, either for a walk, for a bike ride or just to get supplies does help a lot. We cannot stress enough how important this is. One can get completely sucked into the vacuum of work, school, cook and that can drain energy extremely fast. Just stepping out into the fresh air even if it is grey and rainy refreshes your brain and also helps to create a natural switch between activities.
There is a lot of information out there on doing stuff to keep busy during quarantine. If you like to do that, do go ahead and also check out our recommendations. What we have found is that once a week, it is good to do nothing - completely empty our minds. We do not need to be productive all the time. Our brains need time to recharge and we found that sometimes doing nothing is the best thing to do.
We would love to hear from you if you are doing things that make you feel normal and could help other people.
We have opened up the comments section here. Chime in!