Our lives have nearly been on hold for months and lockdown fatigue has taken its toll on many of us. It’s clear that we’re ready to get back in the game. But it doesn’t seem likely that we’ll be returning to our old way of life any time soon—or at all.
So, what will the “new normal” look like and how do we psychologically adapt to the sudden need to change on a massive scale?
- 1 The Likelihood of Returning to the Old Normal – Will it Ever Happen?
- 2 Returning to Some Sort of Normalcy
- 3 What to Do When Everyone is Working or Studying From Home
- 4 How to Keep Stress Levels to a Minimum
- 5 One Pandemic Positive: More Sustainable Living
- 6 Moving Towards the Future
The Likelihood of Returning to the Old Normal – Will it Ever Happen?
The following infographic reflects the opinions of over 500 infectious disease specialists and epidemiologists asked when they think specific activities will return to normal immediately, within the next year, more than a year from now:
As you can see, our old way of life may be out of reach for a while. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t go on living and create new routines.
Returning to Some Sort of Normalcy
For those of you who are returning to work or have children who are returning to school, how do you do it safely?
For employees and students alike, the pressure to perform and complete your work remains the same as it did prior to the pandemic, but now there’s the added stress of taking precautions to not get sick by abiding by new social distancing standards, masks, new sanitation procedures, and whole host of new distractions in the work and learning environment.
Everyone deals with these changes differently.
For instance, homebody types may have experienced minimal anxiety when forced to stay inside (and secretly love it), while social butterflies who thrive in classes, cafes, bars, and parties may have found this time much more challenging.
However, no need to worry. We provide you some tips and tricks that will help you keep stress levels to a minimum and help you create new routines in your daily life.
New opportunities for child & parent learning
As the new school year carries on, schools are reopening in various capacities, but look vastly different than they did in a pre-COVID world.
While school may not look like it used to pre-coronavirus, kids still have the opportunity to learn be creative, and even stay active. The extra time inside gives them the chance to try new activities they may never have tried before via Zoom. This holds true especially for children who are learning remotely from home.
Sure, structuring kids’ time at home can be challenging, but children can still get that structured time they need (and secretly crave) with the wealth of knowledge and effort going into offering afterschool activities and courses online such as:
- dance classes
- coding camps
- science projects
- art lessons
- and more
This is a great opportunity for you to jump in there and get moving, get creative, or get back to learning while bonding with your child—which is sure to get those feel good chemicals firing in your brain like oxytocin (“the love hormone”), serotonin (“the happy chemical”), and dopamine (“the reward chemical”).
So go ahead and join the online child’s yoga class with your child, take a FREE or low-cost Code Academy course and up your career game while your child improves his/her STEM skills for the years ahead.
Or you could use this time to get back into your own game.
Can adults change too?
Change can be even more difficult for adults then it is for children. Adults tend to be less adaptable and more set in their ways, making this sudden “new normal” a hard reality to face.
However, COVID-19 has forced many of us to rethink our old routines and spend time looking at changes we can make to better our health and wellness.
Not only did the pandemic create the impetus for us to be extra cautious about protecting our health; but these “stay at home” orders have inadvertently created new opportunities for:
- ways to stay fit with online classes on YouTube or Zoom live sessions
- stress reduction also via internet sources
- healthier routines by truly creating a work/life balance or integration
Whether it’s cooking healthy meals with your family, doing online workouts, or starting a new meditation routines; health and wellness has received an opportunity to take the center stage.
According to a Green Builder Media report,
“The Coronavirus—the first global pandemic that has ever unfolded online—has hit all-time records of online engagement and activity,” says Sara Gutterman, CEO of Green Builder Media. “Health and Wellness related discussion skews negative, as people are worried about minimizing the spread of the virus, staying well, and losing healthcare benefits. But, interestingly, over the past few weeks, positive sentiment is mounting as people devise creative ways to relieve stress, help neighbors, and foster hope.”
While the pandemic has certainly caused monumental changes in our lives, we can choose to look at some of the positive outcomes as a way to refocus our attention from the negativity.
What to Do When Everyone is Working or Studying From Home
When the whole family (or all your roommates) is/are working from home, it can take a toll on everyone mentally, physically, and emotionally. Having to navigate school, work, childcare, and a loved one’s unemployment – sometimes all at once – can catapult stress levels. Working from home could become a permanent reality for many, meaning that added stress of juggling work and family could continue for some time to come, as well.
Some companies, like Google, have offered their employees the opportunity to work from home long-term, as the pandemic shows no signs of slowing down.
Here are some basic tips to make this time easier for you and your loved ones:
- Set house rules. Just because you are home, does not mean that it’s a free for all. Let your family, housemates, neighbors know your working hours and noise requirements during those hours, including unplanned interruptions.
- Set a time to stop working. When you go into the office or go to school, there’s an end to your day. The same should ring true even if you’re working from home. Once the work and school day are over, stop working. Put your phone alerts on silence if you have to and engage in an activity you enjoy. This will allow you to decompress and lower your stress levels. Maybe spend a little quality time with family before dinner. Better yet, make dinner together. Try and avoid watching the news too much—a little Netflix won’t hurt.
- Maintain a daily, structured routine. A routine can give you a sense of control during a time when things can seem very uncertain, whether you’re working from home or simply riding out the home orders, under employed. But simple things like setting a wakeup time, dog walking time, dinner time, television/recreation time, and sleep time can help you remain calm.
- Practice calming techniques. When life is unpredictable, it is even more imperative to prioritize mindfulness or meditation practices into your life. If you’re feeling stressed, you can practice deep breathing techniques, try guided meditation, or simply sit in quiet reflection with your eyes closed or gazing softly at a solidary object like a candle. Or you can take up more active calming activities like yoga, Pilates, walking, or swimming.
How to Keep Stress Levels to a Minimum
Now more than ever, finding ways to destress are crucial. Below we provide you some general tips to help you keep your stress at bay.
Some ways to keep stress levels to a minimum, include:
- Taking breaks from work. You need breaks. No one can be “on” 24/7. Remember to take a few minutes to walk around and stretch your muscles, rest your eyes, or simply regather your thoughts.
- Being regimented about your sleep. It’s not only important to make sure you’re getting enough sleep – anywhere around 7 to 9 hours – but going to bed and waking up at the same time can keep your circadian rhythm in check. Not to mention, getting a good night’s sleep every night can reduce anxiety and put you less at risk for things like obesity and heart disease. If you need to support sleep cycle, our naturally-sweet CBD Gummies: Sleep 60 CT* can help guide you to dreamland with the aid of natural melatonin (a chemical your body produces naturally), plus the added benefits of full-spectrum CBD.
- Eating healthy. “You are what you eat,” is certainly an overused expression, but there is merit to it. If you eat light, healthy meals; your body will respond in a light, healthy way. And if you regularly eat heavy, unhealthy meals; your body and soul will eventually start to drag—especially if you’re not staying active. But don’t worry. You don’t have to be a certified nutritionist to understand a healthy diet. Just “eat the rainbow.” The phytonutrients that give plants colors also give us the necessary nutrients we need, which can often be identified by its color. You can eating the rainbow by making simple changes like adding colorful salads and stews to your meals—just go easy on the oil, salt, sugar, and processed ingredients.
- Staying active. Make exercise a priority, and if possible, do something outdoors. Give yourself a shot of endorphins, the body’s feel good hormone, and go for a run to get that runner’s high, or if you used to frequent a gym, find creative ways to train in or around your home.
- Connecting to others. Whether it’s through Zoom or finding a way to meet out of doors in a social distancing capacity, find ways to be social with friends and loved ones.
- Supplementing your diet. Herbs have been used for eons to encourage the body to maintain a sense of serenity. While teas and tinctures were once the go-to strategies, now there are more convenient and tastier ways to get the support you need. If you need help reaching relaxation and managing everyday stressors without drowsy effects, CBD Gummies: Calm 60 CT* may help you with its botanical blend of lemon balm (Melissa) and whole plant hemp extract by Charlotte’s Web™.
One Pandemic Positive: More Sustainable Living
On the upside of the pandemic, sustainability has also been brought to the forefront. In fact, a study conducted several months into the pandemic revealed 85 percent of Americans are thinking about sustainability more than ever before. This is due, in part to greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants reaching a record low as the amount of cars on the road and planes in the air have greatly decreased.
Notice the air around you seems a little cleaner? You’re not imagining things.
Less cars on the road directly impacts air pollution, which can have a positive impact on those with asthma or suffering from other respiratory diseases.
In fact, many people around the world have started to view this pandemic as a wakeup call for planetary health. People are getting involved in environmental issues at the government level while making smarter, more sustainable buying choices.
Companies are taking notice, too. Brands are shifting their efforts toward the earth, in partial response to the aforementioned study that found that almost 40% of those polled were willing to pay more for sustainable products.
Now you can see small changes spreading like Americans are embracing reusable products and bags, washable masks, natural housecleaners, and DIY natural solutions; thus, throwing less away.
People are also turning to nature for health and wellness products like herbal teas, plant-based diets and supplements, and CBD products. In fact, CBD sales skyrocketed when coronavirus first broke out in the United States, revealing that people are interested in more natural solutions to help them care for themselves.
For reasons like this, CBD companies like Charlotte’s Web, Inc. take conscious steps to reduce their carbon footprint by utilizing sustainably grown plant-based ingredients in their products.
Learn more about Charlotte’s Web B-Corp Status.
Moving Towards the Future
The mantra, “We’re all in this together,” may sound a bit overused at this point, but it’s the truth. The more we communicate, watch out for one another, and take initiative in managing our own health in these times of change, the better off everyone will be.
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Disclaimer: *These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.