It's the end of the world as we know it, or is it?
The novel coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak is nothing like the world has seen in recent times -- and as a result something the world isn't in any way prepared for. It's impact has been devastating: causing about 500,000 infections and over 21,000 deaths in just a few short months -- with its impact felt in 198 countries.
Due to the nature of COVID-19, the only solution to its spread right now is extreme social distancing. If this isn't done, we're yet to see anything. To get a better idea, it's worth taking a look at the following statistics that show just how severe things will be if social distancing is not practiced:
As you can see, it took the U.S. 9 weeks to go from 0 to 25,000 cases but just three days for the number of infections to double to 50,000; if extreme social distancing isn't practiced, data points to cases doubling every three days.
Unfortunately, the majority of us have to be on lockdown for the foreseeable future but it's easier said than done, isn't it? How do you survive? Here are five ways to actually stay sane while on lockdown:
1. Extend social distancing to news you consume
The only way to put a quick end to this COVID-19 stuff is by practicing extreme social distancing; it's either six feet apart or six feet under. You have to make the choice.
However, you shouldn't just isolate yourself from other people around you till the crisis is over. You should also extend your social distancing to the news item you consume and social media in general.
COVID-19 is very serious, and the world needs to focus all its attention and efforts on it right now. However, the level of panic right now and the resulting damage is too much. It's so much that the stock market has crashed on news of the pandemic and the world is practically poised for a recession; the pandemic is quite serious and deadly but it is being given more power than it has (which is actually negatively affecting lives, businesses, and activities and will continue to affect them possibly for years to come after the pandemic has ended).
It's easy to want to keep checking social media and news sites to see how many new people are infected or dead; resist the temptation to do so and carefully select your source of news.
2. Gain strength by honing your spiritual self
The COVID-19 pandemic is nothing like we've seen before, and as a result we're reacting psychologically and physiologically like we've never done before.
You need more than just physical strength to cope in times like this; you need spiritual strength. This is a good time to go spiritual if you can.
If you're a believer in prayer, this is a good time to pray for yourself and the world -- it will give you strength. You should also consider meditating on a regular basis and doing regular relaxation exercises.
3. Get smarter with food
How do you ensure you don't go hungry while on lockdown for what could be weeks or months?
You have to get smarter about food. There are several lists of the best food delivery service that might come handy during times like this, and it might be a good idea to start familiarizing yourself with them. More importantly, you should start stocking up on essential food items because you'll be needing them; restaurants, hotels, and fast food outlets have been closed in several places and are highly likely to be closed everywhere else.
Nothing else matters if you can't eat, so plan very carefully and take necessary measures to ensure you'll be able to eat in the coming weeks.
4. Carefully plan your finances
Things are so bad that the government has to introduce a stimulus package -- that many would term the largest stimulus package in US history.
This isn't the time to spend frivolously or carelessly; we're hoping that all this -- the plague, the panic, and the lockdown -- will be over in a few weeks and life will return to normal. However, it is important to realize that things could take much longer; it is also important to realize that even when things return to normal, COVID-19 could be a trigger for another world recession.
This means you have to be more shrewd than ever about how you handle your finances right now; avoid any nonessential spending that could put you in an unsafe position and try to have as much cash on hand as possible for potentially difficult times.
5. Binge watch your favorite shows
Thank God we have Netflix and other streaming services!
One good thing that will at least come out of all this is that you can finally watch your favorite TV shows and movies; so make sure to indulge yourself like it is the end of the world!
With the way new cases are rising, and with the current limited testing capabilities available, you're not sure about whether you're infected or not so don't take any chances. Keep your stress down and focus on relaxing as much as you can; also use this opportunity to binge watch your favorite shows and movies and keep yourself distracted like nothing else matters, because when all this is over and we come back to real world you probably won't ever have as much time as this to yourself again.