Has the coronavirus cleared your calendar too? I can’t think of the last time our calendar looked so empty!
Thankfully we are all well, but like many of you, we are currently sheltering in place. While there’s lots of disappointment about what is being missed, we’re actually enjoying having time to do things we otherwise wouldn’t.
Slowing down the pace isn’t all bad.
If you’re feeling anxiety about the future and you’re at a loss for what you can be doing now, I want to give you some ideas.
Instead of just “Neflix and chill,” here are a few things you can do now to be productive and set yourself up for future success.
Make and follow a schedule
Maybe it sounds backwards to take advantage of having free time by putting yourself on a schedule, but I promise it will help you to get more done and feel more accomplished each night. I don’t know about you, but I am constantly wanting to revamp my schedule so I can fit in all of the things I want to do. I want to take time to exercise, study the scriptures, clean and organize my house, read for pleasure, bake, quilt, grow my business, do fun things with my kids, and the list goes on and on.
In my normal life it can be hard to coordinate everything with all the running kids around and scheduled activities. With a blank calendar now, I can start fresh and prioritize what’s most important. In addition to being able to fit in the things that are important to you, having a schedule will help kids thrive and feel more secure in what otherwise could be a stressful time. My kids have been much happier and better behaved with a schedule than with a free-for-all every day. .
Pro-tip: Put snacks on the schedule so when kids whine that they’re hungry you can just refer them to the schedule and assure them that a snack is in the future.
Learn something new
I love learning to do new things, especially when it comes to creativity. With some extra time on your hands, now may be the perfect time to dive into a new hobby. You might even be able to turn that hobby into an income down the road.
If you don’t have the time personally, what about your kids? My kids have loved learning new things in our time off.
Have you heard of Bluprint? They have tons of online classes for all things creative and right now (thanks to the crazy world events), you can get free access for the next two weeks! There are so many great classes from photography and quilting to cooking and drawing. I just signed up and can’t wait to show my kids all of the fun things we’re going to learn. You don’t even need a credit card or anything like that to register for the free access.
Make a plan for the food you’ve got
Whenever I take stock of my freezer and pantry I realize that I had more on hand than I thought. Start planning meals according to what you have. Get creative! Search online for ideas to use the ingredients you have. If you have long term food storage (beans, rice, wheat, powdered milk, etc), this is its time to shine! If you’ve never had to rely on this kind of food before, now is a great time to learn!
Not only will taking inventory of your freezer and pantry allow you to make the most of the food you’ve got, it will bring you peace knowing that you have a plan to feed your family. You won’t need to “panic buy” when you know what you have and what you need. Instead of frantically throwing things into your cart, you can buy just the things you actually need.
Start that business or side hustle you’ve been dreaming about
Maybe it’s just me, but I have way more ideas for businesses and side hustles than I will ever have time to implement. Well, now is a great time to make a plan! Maybe you’ve wanted to start an Etsy shop to sell what you make or create an online course to teach people to do whatever it is you are great at.
Just the other day I was talking to a friend about starting a blog. The wonderful thing about having an online business like a blog is that the startup cost is very low. You can set up a self-hosted blog (the kind you’ll want if you want to eventually earn money as opposed to just document your family adventures) inexpensively.
Whatever your online business, you’ll definitely want to start an email list. You can sign up for Convertkit (the email client I use) for free for your first 500 subscribers.
Make a plan to pay off your debt
If paying off debt is on your financial “to do” list, then now is a great time to make a plan. Starting is often the hardest part. You may be in denial and avoiding actually looking at the numbers. I know how that feels!
In my experience, making a plan brings so much peace! You may not realize how much of your current stress is caused by the debt hanging over your head. If you need some guidance on how to get started, check out the video below that my husband and I made talking about just that!
Well those are some great ways to start filling your coronavirus calendar with good things!
What are YOU doing to make the most of this crazy situation!?
Until next time, keep washing your hands, stop touching your face, and stay home!
This week and next week are our previously-scheduled school holidays, so we’re mostly just relaxing into it all. Once school holidays are over, and schools start up with the on-line learning, we’ll establish more of a routine. One thing we’re working on now is a longer-term plan for if someone gets sick and has to be isolated from the rest of the family. To that end we’ve set up a small TV with a streaming device; given everyone their own colour hand towels and bath towels; and designated a specific ‘sick room’ and ‘sick bathroom.’ I’ve also ordered in some more jigsaw puzzles and board games to keep us entertained. In some areas of Europe, Amazon has stopped delivering anything but essential groceries and supplies; so I wanted to make sure to get in early there. As for ‘making the most of it’, we’re just taking it one day at a time. They keep telling us these measures are for a minimum of six months and perhaps until a vaccine is developed (which could be 18 months away.) As much as I’m enjoying this extra time with the family, if I think in terms of 6 to 18 months I get a bit batty. But if I take each day as it comes, it’s really kind of nice.
Love these ideas, girl. For me, the whole situation has actually resulted in significantly longer work days (I work in the public service), albeit I am working from home, which has been an adjustment. The creating a schedule thing has helped — the first week, I felt like I was flailing about but a couple weeks in and I feel like I’m finding a rhythm. I’ve also joined the quarantine clean crew and have been using this time to really focus on cleaning/decluttering our place (slowly, though, due to the whole work thing).
Stay safe, friend!
Glad you get to work from home!! It definitely is an adjustment and the schedule keeps needing to be tweaked, but it’s better than flailing about. 🙂 I know how that is! And hooray for getting some cleaning done! 🙂
The flailing period was not enjoyable at all, so I’m definitely happy to have moved into the feeling-like-things-are-more-normal phase. Busy, but more normal for sure 🙂