Stressed with the New Normal? Use These Coping Tips for Relief

FORT WORTH, Tex. — If someone told you two months ago that toilet paper and hand sanitizer would become highly valued commodities, you probably would have decided not to take investment advice from that person. But look at where we are now. It’s not just toilet paper and hand sanitizer but water, bread, and non-perishable foods that have now perished from grocery shelves. To help you maintain your composure and reduce stress, Local DFW Riverside Homebuilders has developed some coping tips for handling the COVID19 pandemic.

“We work with families who are excited about their new home,” explains Tim Fleet, CEO of Riverside Homebuilders. “Now that the home is the place for self-quarantining through the health crisis, making it a safe haven is more important than ever before.”

He referred to the aftermath of 9/11, where Americans were also confronted with a national crisis.

“We were all so stunned by the tragedy that we didn’t know what to do. People sought comfort in different ways, and we saw a kindness and nationalism that rose out of the ashes of those horrific events. We’re just trying to help people ”

Adjust to the New Normal

While you’re isolating yourself and your family from the threat of the coronavirus, you need to embrace “the new normal” for a while. Here are some stress reduction tips to guide you through with more comfort and less stress.

Don’t panic. There will be toilet paper in your future. Sure, it makes sense that people stocked up on hand sanitizers, cleaning products, and surgical masks to prevent the spread of the virus. But toilet paper? Panic creates strange responses. Just remember that there will be more bathroom tissue hitting stores and, assuming that the hoarders have more than enough to last for a while, the panic purchasing should subside. In the meantime, there are plenty of tissues and lightweight paper napkins (you know, the really inexpensive ones) that could do the same job. Use your ingenuity. 

You can’t watch sports, and maybe that’s a good thing. It’s March, which ordinarily means basketball fans are ensconced in March Madness. There’s nothing ordinary about our lives now, so not only are you missing that tournament, but all professional sports have been halted for the foreseeable future.

Instead of being glued to a screen to watch your favorite teams, use the time to get in a little action of your own. You can get outdoors and play golf, for example. Not up for traditional golf? Try disc golf. Visit a batting cage or driving range. Ride your bike or take a walk. Find a basketball court and shoot some hoops. If you have cardio equipment at home, dust it off and get in a daily workout. Take this opportunity to learn yoga. You can certainly find videos online to get you started.

Challenge yourself to remain physically active, which is a great stress reducer!

Create boredom busters. You still have electricity, internet access, and running water. Other than being limited to where you can go, you have no limits to what you can do at home. Pull out the board games and card decks and start playing. Work on a crossword or jigsaw puzzle. Play charades or Pictionary. Get the family together and work on learning a new language, like American Sign Language.

You can also use this quality time to cook together. Try out new recipes. Pull that crockpot, bread machine, pressure cooker, ice cream maker, or air fryer out of the cabinet where it was stashed and put it to work. Challenge every person in your household to choose something they want to make. 

Work through the “To Do” list. We all have home projects we’ve been putting off. Now that you’re pretty much forced to be at home, tackle those projects, one at a time. Paint something—a room, your cabinets, a door, or a piece of furniture. Clean out the garage, purge your closets, and reorganize the pantry or kitchen cabinets. Fix the torn screens on your windows. Build a raised garden bed or a water feature. 

Schedule regular sessions of “Me Time”. With the panic and the ongoing stream of bad news in the media, you need to keep your spirits up. In the months following 9/11, people were looking for comfort. There was an increase in church attendance. More and more people turned to hobbies, finding comfort in working with their hands. Knitting, sewing, woodworking, painting, baking, scrapbooking, and gardening became even more popular. If you enjoy a particular hobby, commit some time to it. There’s definitely satisfaction in making something!

If you’re not into hobbies, what do you enjoy? A long soak in the bathtub? Losing yourself in a book? Listening to music? Whatever it is, make this time a priority so that you can escape from your stress and recharge your inner batteries.

Hold onto as much normal as you can. For as long as this pandemic keeps us somewhat shuttered, we need to still find some sense of normal. What were some of your daily routines before this sudden change? You can still take your dog for a walk, have family meals, watch television, and enjoy your outdoor time. Rather than stressing about what you CAN’T do or get, focus on what you CAN. Maintain a positive mindset. Whether you’re alone or with others, share what you’re thankful for.

Stop counting the days and start counting your blessings. 

Everything is temporary. Good times and bad times are short-lived. Avoid focusing on the difficulty. Instead, think about the good things in your life—the people who matter to you, having a safe place to live, enough food to eat, your faith, and every other blessing you’ve somehow overlooked. Hold onto a positive attitude and look at this time as the opportunity to tune out the noise and tune into yourself. This, too, shall pass.


About Riverside Homebuilders: Riverside Homebuilders builds in 24 communities in the Dallas-Fort Worth area with two key values driving their company: quality and comfort. They exemplify those values by putting the customer first, building a skillful home, reducing the carbon footprint and saving energy.