Let’s try to see the positive side of the situation…it is a chance to catch up on your domestic chores, reading and hobbies. It can be a productive time – after all, when bubonic plague closed Cambridge University in 1665, Isaac Newton was forced to self-isolate at home and sitting in the garden one day he saw an apple fall from a tree and discovered universal gravitation.
Ask for help
See our list of volunteer support groups across the local area
99% of people are genuinely wanting to help their neighbours but unfortunately there will be a handful of scammers out there so please don’t give sensitive or financial information out or let complete strangers into your home.
Please also be aware of coronavirus-related scams circulating at the moment.
It is important to keep as active as possible, for your physical and mental health. Walk up and down the stairs, squat against the wall, do push-ups in the living room etc Even when you are sitting down you can raise your legs or clench your thighs.
If you can keep busy that will help pass the time. Here are some ideas:
- Knitting, jigsaw puzzles, drawing or writing a diary.
- Catch up with your reading (you can order any book you want for delivery from Hungerford Bookshop)
- Sign up for an online course here
- Join the facebook art club group to share your creativity
- Sing (or strum) along with Mike Hawthorne’s Daily Sing-a-long or with the stay at home choir or stayinandsing
- Learn or improve your chess skills with chessable.com that is free to register
- Downloadable art activities for kids (looks good for adults too) – plus a great art competition for kids
- Why not take a virtual tour of 12 famous museums (34 more here!)
- If you’ve been meaning to make eco-bricks now’s your chance – you can join the new Newbury Ecobrickers facebook group
- Research your family tree
- Learn about the night sky
Let us know (in the comments below) if you start a new hobby or revive an old one.
Working from Home
Thanks for the CCB team for these tips for people not used to working from home:
1. Set up a designated working spot at home to help keep your mind work-focused and keep your work separate from other aspects of your home-life.
2. Set up a routine with strict start and times time so you don’t work too few or many hours during the day.
3. If you feel lonely schedule some video calls with colleagues and contacts throughout the day, Some home-workers even work in chat-rooms with colleagues on in the background for that truly “social” office feel.
Food and Nutrition
You can pro-actively chose a healthy immune-boosting diet and make use of your time to try new ingredients and recipes. Listen to some great ideas here from nutritionist Sam Silvester on what to buy and cook at this time. If you are struggling financially at this time, contact West Berkshire Food Bank on 01635 760560
Be aware of how the news makes you feel. The World Health Organization advises us to “Get the facts” but “minimise news that causes you to feel anxious or distressed,” and “find opportunities to amplify positive and hopeful stories.” Positive News Magazine is offering a half price gift subscription if you use the code: GIVEPOSITIVENEWS
Dr Justin Amery, a GP in Oxford has done a series of videos to help you prepare for the worst while hoping for the best. Justin says that we are suffering from an epidemic of fear that is, in some ways, more damaging than the coronavirus epidemic itself. His purpose is to reduce fear and bring comfort by explaining how we can take more control back into our lives.
Connect Positively with Others
Look after your mental health at this stressful time.
You can sign up for the Age UK Telephone Befriending service. Or maybe write a letter to a resident of a retirement home which isn’t allowing any visitors at the moment. Residents at Redwood House in Hungerford would be grateful – their address is Redwood House, Coldharbour Road, Hungerford Rg17 0HR
Technology can help you communicate with loved ones remotely. It’s not difficult but it can be scary setting it up if you’ve not it before so here is our guide to technology can be your new best friend during Coronavirus.
If you find yourself cooped up with family members this can be stressful if you are used to the kids being at school and the partner being at work! My two techniques over the years for not killing my sons were 1. pretend they are someone else’s (you soon modify your language) 2. talk to yourself about how much they are driving you mad (this stops you saying stuff outloud you regret and works with husbands too).
Don’t worry about how much screen time your kids have during lockdown. Here are some fun and constructive websites you can encourage them to visit.
Connect with Nature
Connecting with nature invariably makes people feel more grounded and relaxed. Find a comfortable place to sit near a window and make weekly counts of birds and wildlife in your garden for the British Trust for Ornithology.
Help with Finances
If you need support with your energy bills, or advice on which benefits you need to claim, contact the National Energy Action’s Warm and Safe Homes Advice Service by calling 0800 304 7159 for free Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm, filling out their referral form (nea.org.uk/advice/wash-advice) or messaging them through Facebook chat via their dedicated Facebook page.
Laughing is proven to be good for the health, relieving stress and boosting the immune system. So as hard as it might feel right now, try to find something to smile or laugh about or watch your favourite comedy show. And here are some substitutes for loo roll should you run out…
We recommend the UK news satire website newsthump.com and are collecting bad jokes here:
I never thought my hands would consume more alcohol than my mouth.
My chiropodist has cancelled all appointments. She said she was advised to observe the distancing rule by keeping two feet away.
I’m giving up drinking for a month. Sorry, bad punctuation. I’m giving up. Drinking for a month.
My body has absorbed so much soap and disinfectant that when I pee it cleans the toilet…
It’s only ‘quarantine’ if it comes from the quarantine region of France. Otherwise it’s just ‘sparkling isolation’.
Midges coming out for spring: We’re starving! Where the f*** is everyone..?!!!
Penny has been amusing herself by making these videos from the ‘Ministry of Paws & Claws’: