It’s on everybody’s minds: COVID-19. The term ‘social distancing’ feels familiar to us by now. Many of us have been quarantined at home, trying to find balance between teaching our children and working full time and maybe, just maybe, also carving in just a bit of time to focus on ourselves. If you’re like me, there are times where the weight of it all feels more than you can bare. Luckily today Special Agent Bobbi shares her tips on how to thrive during social distancing.
How to Thrive During Social Distancing
As the mother of a medically complex child, “social distancing” is nothing new to us. My son has had 3 open-heart surgeries and many interventions, so we’ve had to isolate at home before and after each one. And, we’ve been isolated in a hospital room multiple times in the last 8 years, sometimes for as long as 6 weeks. I know how all of you feel…it’s stressful, exhausting, and very, very lonely!
The thing to remember is that our kids feed off of our emotions. We can try to hide it, but they can feel it. And, in the last 6 weeks, everything has changed for them…their routine, their sense of safety and security, pretty much everything they know has been impacted. They’re nervous and scared, and they’re looking to us for comfort and stability.
Over the years, I’ve had to learn ways to stay upbeat, positive, and hopeful. I hope these techniques work for you!
Turn off the news! – I know you want to stay informed. There is a lot going on right now, and things are changing quickly and constantly. But, the news is an emotional roller coaster these days. Politics is dominating everything, and it doesn’t matter which side you are on, following along will undoubtedly lead to feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, anger, and resentment. Ask someone you trust to keep you informed on things that you need to know, and turn off the news!
Unfollow negativity on social media – Personally, I love social media! Facebook helps me feel connected to other people and part of a community, which is so essential during times like these. But, social media, like the news, is an emotional roller coaster. While you read through your feed, you experience feelings of happiness, sadness, resentment, and jealously alternatively, and all in the span of a few minutes. It’s emotionally exhausting! The next time you read your feed and come across a post that invokes a negative feeling, Unfollow them. You can even Snooze someone for 30 days, if you don’t want to unfollow someone completely. Take control of your emotions…cultivate and hone your news feed, so it’s only positive posts.
Create a light at the end of the tunnel – One of the most difficult things about this situation is that no one knows for sure when it will end. We don’t know when life will go back to “normal,” and that is very daunting. It’s always important to have something to look forward to, so you may need to create one! Plan a vacation, a birthday party, or an event in the future that you can look toward. We planned our first Disney Vacation for December, and the anticipation is creating so much excitement in our home. Think about the details…if you’re planning a birthday, make the invite list, plan the goodie bags, bookmark cakes that you like. If you are planning a vacation, put down a deposit. Many vacation venues, including Disney, have great cancellation or postponement policies. Plan for Christmas…make your gift list or your holiday card list. Find something to look forward to, and get excited about it!
Relive old memories – Photos are a great way to remember happy times. I mean, no one takes photos of bad times, right? And, we all have lots of photos on our phones. We even have a digital photo frame in our family room, and sometimes, we just sit and watch it flip through photos. The kids will remember good times and ask about photos they don’t know or don’t remember. Nostalgia is such a powerful and positive emotion that can override today’s fear and anxiety. Try to take some time every day to look through photos, and do it with your family. Get a digital photo frame or program your laptop to flip through photos. You can even just print out black-and-white photos on your printer and put them up around your home. And remember, those good times will happen again!
Do something positive for someone else – One of the best ways to combat negative emotions is through positive actions! Set aside time every day to do something for someone else. Write a note or send a card to someone to let them know what they mean to you. Write a positive review for a business that you love. Send flowers to someone who is struggling. Brightening someone’s day is the best way to brighten your own!
Focus on your favorites – There is a lot of comfort in your favorite things…your favorite movie, song, game, food, etc. Try to indulge in your favorites! My husband and I have been playing our favorite songs for the kids, introducing them to Sting, the Beatles, the Commodores, Peter Gabriel. We love hearing our old favorites and telling the kids all about the singers and bands. I also introduced my kids to The Muppets, and we’ve been watching the old Muppet movies that I grew up with. Your favorites are like a warm blanket…the envelope you and make you feel happy and secure. Indulge in them as much as you can!
Be grateful – When we are struggling, it is so easy to focus on what we’ve lost. But, it’s so important to focus on what we have! Make it a daily exercise to think of 3 things that you’re grateful for each day. Create a gratitude jar for your family, and every time someone feels sad or angry, ask them to write down one thing they’re thankful for and put it in the jar. On the last day of every month, read through each item in the jar and remember how wonderful life really is!
I hope these techniques help you as much as they’ve helped me over the years! I know that it’s a scary time, and there is so much to worry about, so much out of our control. The only things we can do are take control of what we can, stay positive, and wait for this to pass. And, it will! Sending love and hugs to each and every one of you!!
Special Agent Bobbi = Special Needs Mom + Real Estate Agent
Bobbi Desai – Realtor
Century 21 Redwood Realty
When Bobbi was pregnant with her first child, Ryan, he was diagnosed with congenital heart defects. Ryan underwent 3 open-heart surgeries and was then diagnosed with a very rare bone disease, Torg-Winchester Syndrome. He is 1 of 12 reported cases worldwide since 1960, and there is no treatment and no cure. Ryan is now 8-years-old and in second grade. He gets around in a motorized wheelchair and has limited us of his hands, but he is a sweet, smart, funny, and social little boy!
Bobbi is an award-winning Realtor® with Century 21 Redwood Realty. Known as Special Agent Bobbi = Special Needs Mom + Real Estate Agent, Bobbi works with families with unique needs and challenges and focuses on customizing the buying and selling processes for each family. In 2018, she was awarded the Keep Doing You Award from Realtor.com for being a trail-blazer in the industry. She was also recognized as a Top Producer by the Dulles Area Association of Realtors in 2018 and 2019 and attained the status of Centurion Ruby Producer with Century 21 Redwood Realty in 2019.