Every cloud has a silver lining. I invite you to think back to some of the ‘worst’ times in your life. And if enough time has passed for you to be over the initial, raw, intense part of it, take a look at all the positives that came from that scenario. If you start looking objectively, I bet you’ll find loads of ways in which you’ve grown, learned, evolved or developed for the better.
The Coronavirus is scary – without doubt. And we need to take it seriously by keeping up to date with guidelines and recommendations from our health services and Government. But apart from that, there’s no need to pour over every article and watch every news item. Research shows that prolonged stress and anxiety lowers our immune system, which is exactly what we DON’T want right now.
If you ARE feeling scared, vulnerable and your fear is getting out of control, please get in touch. We’ve helped clients cope with anxiety and stress for 26 years. And there’s no need to leave your home! We can help you with hypnotherapy, NLP, EFT and coaching over Skype or the telephone. We’ll get you out of the fear trap, feeling empowered and back in control in no time!
So as well as washing my hands more often, getting in the sunshine whenever possible, eating well and keeping hydrated to support my health, I’ll be keeping a focus on everything positive to do with this pandemic.
Here are some of the fantastic stories, I’ve found so far:
The power of the voice
The Italians are a demonstrative bunch and these videos show them playing music from their balconies to ensure nobody in isolation feels, well, isolated. This is especially interesting, as singing – particularly with others – has been shown to reduce stress and boost the immune system. And we all know how good it feels to dance to our favourite music, even if the entire street IS watching! Whether you like ballads, dance or something more patriotic, it’s been happening in Italy!
Dolphins, fish and swans return to Venice
Still in Italy, residents of Venice have shared photos and video of swans, fish and dolphins reclaiming the city’s canals, after boat traffic has stopped due to their lockdown.
Here’s an unexpected side effect of the pandemic – the water’s flowing through the canals of Venice is clear for the first time in forever. The fish are visible, the swans returned. pic.twitter.com/2egMGhJs7f
— Kaveri 🇮🇳 (@ikaveri) March 16, 2020
Venice hasn’t seen clear canal water in a very long time. Dolphins showing up too. Nature just hit the reset button on us pic.twitter.com/RzqOq8ftCj
— Gianluca De Santis (@b8taFPS) March 17, 2020
since there’s no boat’s traffic in venice’s canals, white swans came back 😭 this is precious pic.twitter.com/xJOFKL8Dal
— …?? ㅠ_ㅠ (@fiIterjm) March 13, 2020
Meanwhile in Spain
When in self isolation, it’s important to keep movement and exercise part of your daily routine. But what about if you’re a couch potato? This personal trainer in Spain is making it his business to keep his neighbours fit with free rooftop workouts!
[Edit. Video removed from YouTube, so link taken out]
Free Educational Resources
As more schools close, some parents are worried about how to educate their children. This website is a growing list of resources that many companies are offering for free instead of their usual paid subscriptions.
Take a free virtual tour and immerse yourself in the arts and culture
Wondering what to do with all your time in self isolation? Why not visit all the art galleries and museums you’ve ever wanted, from the comfort of your sofa?! Google partnered with over 2,500 museums and galleries around the world to offer free virtual tours and online displays of their collections.
Free ‘Coronavirus’ packs for elderly residents
A corner store in Scotland put together packs containing a toilet roll, paracetamol, tissues and hand cleaner to give out for free to elderly residents.
Landlord drops rent for tenants during April
Nathan Nichols is a landlord who owns two units in South Portland. During April, he will not be collecting rent from any of his tenants as he knows many of them will be in financial hardship. What a wonderful gesture from someone who knows he is financially privileged and is using that to support others.
Free Qi Gong to support the immune system
Medics in China have been teaching patients Qi Gong to help relieve symptoms of Coronavirus and strengthen the immune system. Martial Artist, Shifu Yan Xin, is one of many people using his knowledge and expertise to give back to the community at this time. He’s launched a Power Up You Health and Boost Your Immunity Live Stream Training course which you can do for free, from your own home.
Free Yoga, meditation – you name it, you can find it
As the lockdown continues, more and more health and wellness experts are offering services online for free. I’ve taken part in a couple of virtual choirs which was surprisingly fun and uplifting.
Reduction in greenhouse gases
Until the Coronavirus outbreak, the headlining stories were to do with the environment and threat of climate change. After going into lockdown for two weeks, China saw an unexpected positive to their situation – with reduced working hours and sites and shops closed, their greenhouse gas emissions reduced by a quarter.
A few weeks later, Italy went into lockdown. And the video below, by the European Space Agency, shows their nitrous oxide ( a greenhouse gas and ozone layer destroyer) emissions dropping dramatically:
Communities working together
In my own village, residents got together to see how they could support vulnerable elders. We’ve created a list of people who are willing to collect prescriptions, deliver shopping, drive people to appointments who want to avoid public transport, deliver a home cooked meals or even just call someone on the phone so they have some form of human contact if they are in isolation. And we’re by no means unique. All across the world, neighbourhoods are getting together to perform – what is now been called – ‘caremongering‘.
Free hand sanitizer from distilleries and perfumes groups
As hand sanitiser became as rare as hen’s teeth, several distilleries in the US upped the ante and used their alcohol to create hand sanitiser which they then gave away for free to residents.
In a similar story, French luxury brand Louis Vuitton said it would manufacture and distribute hand sanitizer in all of the group’s perfumes and cosmetics brands (including Guerlain, Givenchy and Christian Dior) to French health authorities for free.
Closed restaurants to feed the vulnerable
Chef Jose Andres closed all his restaurants in Washington DC area, but repurposed them as community kitchens to help feed people in need as a “service for people in need of a plate of food during this emergency.”
People of America…Important News: All my restaurants in DC area are closed until further notice. Here at @ThinkFoodGroup safety of employees & guests is too priority. Some restaurants will transform into Community Kitchens to offer to-go lunches for those who need a meal. (1/4) pic.twitter.com/3HTyT607ZI
— José Andrés (@chefjoseandres) March 15, 2020