Get some fresh air.
At least twice a day or as much as you can -even while in quarantine. Even just sitting next to an open window and breathing deeply with eyes closed can be a virtual break from sitting around inside.
Get some SUN.
Again, as much as you can- especially if you are in quarantine. Exposure to direct sunlight helps your body make Vitamin D.
Find a sunny spot in your house/apartment/yard and soak up some rays for 15-30 minutes (unless, of course, it’s cloudy).
Encourage your grandchildren to put thoughts down in words. Inventive spelling is wonderful for the younger children. For yourselves, you can start keeping a diary or journal. Transform your thoughts and feelings into a poem. Write a letter to someone you love – an actual letter, on paper, that you put in an envelope with a stamp – grandchildren especially love to receive those.
MOVE your body.
Get some physical activity. Stretch and exercise along with a YouTube video. Try the 7-minute workout. Just get the body in motion. Our Director of Athletics, Coach Dejon, has been posting awesome exercise activities on our instagram account and MDS MiBayit.
LAUGH a lot and often.
Laugh and play as much as you can… laughter is the best medicine. Game nights, movie nights, joke books, and looking through family photos and videos can lighten things up and take off some of the pressure.
DISCONNECT from your devices.
This one is tricky when we have to be on our devices for much of the day to attend to the news and stay connected with friends, etc. If you are with your grandchildren, try and carve out some time for unplugging for them. During un-screened time, encourage your grandchildren to read a real book, draw, play cards or board games, dress up, imaginary play, do a puzzle.
Go on an “INFORMATION DIET.”
We are encouraging everyone to take breaks from the media…. and stick to reliable, less emotional sources for your news. Turning off the computer and TV and disconnecting can give you and your family some distance and help you put things into perspective and frame the conversation for your children and grandchildren.
TALK to someone.
It is 100% normal, natural and predictable for people to feel really uncomfortable in this situation. It is very hard to live our lives with a heightened level of worry and uncertainty with which we are currently living. Can talking to someone about your angst and worries change the things that are making you feel that way? Probably not. Can talking to someone change the way you feel about those things? Probably. Believe it or not, talking about your feelings, saying them out loud to another person who listens to you and validates how you feel, actually makes those feelings easier to bear.
Sending you lots of positive energy and motivation! We can do this!!!
Ariella Azaraf, School Social Worker and Michal Agus Fox, School Psychologist of Manhattan Day School in New York City.