A simple three step guide for successfully and safely moving forward with life and business during COVID-19.
As the founder of a health tech company, I've kept up with the latest on COVID-19 or the novel Coronavirus. A simple google search will land you on headlines that read, "Simple Math Offers Alarming Answers," "COVID-19 Is A Threat To Trump's Presidency," and "Man With Presumptive Positive Identified As Episcopal Rector." And yes, the article included a photo of the religious leader in his clerical clothes. If you, like me, are being bombarded by these alarming headlines (and photos), it may be difficult to avoid thinking about taking drastic measures — i.e. checking the confirmed COVID-19 cases and death tracker on the hour every hour.
And to add to the hysteria, we recently learned that our most beloved Hollywood couple, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson tested positive for Coronavirus. If it wasn't clear before, it is now. We are in the midst of a public health crisis. Successfully moving on with life and business during COVID-19 doesn't mandate you to turn off your notifications, but it does require a willingness to be more thoughtful about where you get your information and how to best prepare for your health and minimize the economic impact on the community at large.
To help, I created an easy three step guide for getting on with life in the midst of a public health crisis with women in mind. Because let's face it, we already have a 200+ year waiting period until we can enjoy equal pay. So while others are keeping themselves distracted with doomsday theories, get informed, make a plan of action, and get ahead.
Use the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as your primary source of information. Getting the facts correct in any public health crises is paramount to taking the correct action. The CDC is responsible for controlling the introduction and spread of infectious diseases in the US. While their slow release of COVID-19 testing kits has received a great deal of criticism, their ability to provide the most up-to-date information on what you should know, situation updates, and information for specific audiences, has made them one of the most reliable sources of information in the US. So before you find yourself repeating or acting on second-hand information from a friend or family member (I'm guilty as well), consider checking out the CDC's information page on Coronavirus instead.
Know what your plan of action will be if you experience COVID-19 symptoms. According to the CDC, early data indicates those who are most at risk include those who are immunocompromised (i.e. COPD, diabetes, HIV positive). If you are living with one or more of these illnesses, inform a trusted friend who can advocate for you in the case of an infection. If you fall into the category of "relatively healthy" think about what you can do to prevent the spread and unnecessary interruption to your life. For one thing, did you know that in most people COVID-19 can be treated safely at home? By using virtual care services, like Doctor on Demand or Teladoc, as opposed to walking into a clinic, hospital, or office setting, you're not only limiting your exposure to COVID-19 in the case that you don't have it but also limiting the exposure of health care workers and other members of the public should you, in fact, have Coronavirus.
Knowing ahead of time whether you plan on calling into your primary care provider or booking a live video visit to get expert clinical advice, can make all the difference in giving you the peace of mind that you need to get on with your personal and work life. If you need help choosing the right virtual care provider, view what is available and use our virtual care service and price comparison tool at Hello Jessie.
Make small adjustments to your daily routine before taking drastic measures. Before locking yourself in an underground bunker (Blast from the Past reference anyone?) consider taking a few precautions to help protect yourself and others from coming into contact with COVID-19 — all the while supporting the businesses that you love.
As of now, the CDC advises that it's safe to venture out of the house as long as you take precautions such as frequently cleaning your hands with soap or hand sanitizer and staying at least 3 feet away from anyone who is coughing or sneezing. However, this recommendation does not apply to people in high-risk groups who are being advised by the CDC to avoid crowds. That said, if you are a "relatively healthy" individual and you want your business and the businesses that you love patronizing to still be around by the time the current public health crisis subsides, make a point to get out and support them (just don't forget to sanitize your hands when you get there and before you leave). By making these small adjustments, not only do we have a better chance of containing the spread of COVID-19 but also of keeping our economy, especially small businesses, intact.
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Help! I'm Dating a Jerk!
Dear Armchair Psychologist,
I've been dating my boyfriend for a year. After spending some vacation time with him and realizing he is not treating me the way I like I'm wondering — what do I do? I need him to be kinder and softer to me but he says simply, "chivalry is not his thing." I believe when two people decide to be together they need to adjust to each other. I don't think or feel my boyfriend is adjusting to what's important to me. Should I try to explain to him what's important to me, accept him for what he is, or leave him as I'm just not happy and the little gestures are important to me?
- Loveless Woman
Dear Loveless Woman,I am saddened you aren't getting your needs met in your relationship. Intimacy and affection are important to sustain a healthy relationship. It's troubling that even though you have expressed your needs to your boyfriend that it's fallen on deaf ears. You need to explore, with a therapist, why you have sought out this type of relationship and why you have stayed in it, even when it's making you chronically unhappy? Your belief that couples should adjust to each other is correct to some degree. These things often include compromising and bending on things like who gets the bigger closet or where to go for dinner. However, it's a tall order to ask someone to change their personality and if your boyfriend is indeed a jerk, like you say, who refuses to acknowledge your love language or express kindness and softness, then maybe you should find a partner who will embrace you while being chivalrous.
- The Armchair Psychologist
Hi Armchair Psychologist,
Just wanted to let you know that your article was really offensive to read. Do you refer to women's genitals as: "gross," "ghasty," "smelly," or otherwise? Humans are not perfect, each of us is different and you should emphasize this. I hope that man finds a partner that will love and accept him rather than tearing him down. Which gender has a whole aisle devoted to their "special" hygiene needs? I can tell you it's not men.
Dear Male Reader,Thank you for your thoughtful feedback to my Armchair Psychologist column. My email response bounced so am writing you here. I am so sorry I offended you. It wasn't my intention. I actually meant to be sardonic and make the writer see how ridiculous she sounded for the harsh language she used to describe her date. I obviously failed at this sneer since you think I meant to be offensive. Many apologies. I'll do better. Have a wonderful day and keep writing us with your thoughts.
- Ubah, The Armchair Psychologist