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Keeping Spirits Up During a Stay at Home Order

Posted By Debbie Story, Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Updated: Tuesday, April 7, 2020

It comes as no surprise that among PWCC members, work, professional development, and keeping strong connections is a priority during the #stayathome order. Chardonnay might also appear once or twice as an answer to the question, “How do you keep your spirits up?”

Lindsay Zoeller is expanding the online resources and building a greater social media presence for her company, The Chicago Family Tutor. Amanda ReCupidoStephanie Guerre, and Heather H. Bennett are among members using this time for professional development webinars. Stephanie is taking the “Science of Happiness” course that Yale is offering for free right now. Heather is listening to uplifting business podcasts (Being Boss) while walking outside.

Many PWCC members, like Elene Cafasso enjoy the consistency and rhythm of working. “When I'm with my clients, I'm in flow and living my life's purpose.” Elene said. She also walks outside daily, along with many other members. In addition to re-connecting with network contacts, Jessica Worny Janicki ordered a standing/sitting desk and took time to set it up a comfortable and functional home office.

Lizzy Diaz-Ortiz and Peggy Titterington stay connected with friends and coworkers via video calls. Nicole Soltanzadeh does regular check-ins on video with family and friends as well, and enjoys "virtual happy hours." With friends spread across the country, geographic proximity is no longer as relevant,” she wrote. “I've really found a lot of joy in reconnecting with old friends.”

It is clear that personal connection, more so than professional contacts, seem to be the focus for our members. Margie McCartney calls her 91-year old mother every day. While her mother is receiving around the clock care at home, only her husband could talk her out of driving from Chicago to New York to be with her.

Self-care, exercise, and practicing gratitude were also common responses. “In the mornings, I "J & J" —juice and journal – which includes three things I am most grateful for daily,” Raeann Olsen-Jackson wrote. She added that in the evenings she loves to knit, try new vegetarian recipes, and in addition to relying on Netflix and Amazon Prime to keep them entertained, she and her spouse “put on boxing gloves and spar in the living room.”

If you aren’t lucky enough to have a spouse that willing, virtual workouts are popular. Jenny Chung uses Zoom to practice yoga virtually with her favorite instructor, and like many dog owners, Becca Berkenstadt appreciates the distraction and need to take her dog for a walk each day. She also does physical exercise like lifting weights or practicing yoga daily.

Kristie McDonald practices mind and thought work, EFT, as well as meditation and keeping a gratitude journal. Claudine Pauselli journals, minimizes her news consumption to only key hours of the day, takes walks, and practices yoga every morning. Not talking about the pandemic situation on every text or phone call and “adding some humor in my day” also keeps her spirits up. Becky Nagel is also meditating, working out, and limiting her engagement with the news and social media.

Finally, Janice Boback spoke for all of us when she wrote, “being happy that my household does not have the virus” keeps her spirits up. Well said, Janice. Stay safe. Stay healthy. Stay at home.

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Abby Rath
Word Nerd | Storyteller

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