COVID-19 lockdown officially begins for New Zealand today.
It'a a new day for New Zealand with this unprecedented move to close most businesses and to limit the movement of all Kiwis. Nevertheless, today marks our first day in the fight as a nation and one people against COVID-19.
As working from home becomes the new normal, people will find themselves with more time on hand without having to change out of their PJs or getting stuck in traffic to get to work. With all this additional hours in a day, and to help with maintaining sanity, here are four ways to make the most of the new world we find ourselves in:
All those catch ups with friends near and far that you've been putting off for some time can finally happen. Only, it'll be virtual.
The great thing is that most people near and far are likely on lockdown as well, which means they will also be available. Technology makes it easy for 1-1 catch ups, but also for multi-party group calls. FaceTime, Whatsapp, Skype and Zoom are some of the apps that can make communicating really easy and it is free. For iPhone users, FaceTime works really well and is easily accessible without the need to download any apps.
For the social butterflies that want to continue expanding your social circle, there have been a number of virtual community calls that have been suggested and likeminded people are aplenty online. Facebook and LinkedIn are places to look for these groups to connect virtually with.
It is a great idea to keep fit physically during this time as it helps with your overall wellness. Experts recommend about 20-30 minutes of exercise a day.
For the workout aficionados, or those of you wanting to make use of your newfound hours to get fit, home fitness and workouts are actually a thing.
There are many apps and online resources that can help you achieve fitness while at home. Even your beloved Les Mills classes are available online - Les Mills On Demand. A kicker is the free trial to get you going if you have never experienced it. If you need like to get amongst people to workout and feed off the energy, simply connect yourself to your other friends on a video call and make it a social time. There are plenty of workout routines on YouTube to tackle with friends.
While we are still only in the first quarter of the year, why not take this time to pick up a new skill or build on your existing ones so you can finish the year feeling fulfilled and enriched.
There are many resources available, and while the libraries are out of bounds, you can certainly jump online and pick up an e-book (try Books on your iPhones to get started quickly) or click on Podcasts on your iPhone (apologies to the android users) and immerse yourself in the world of discovery and self-improvement.
If you have wanted to learn more about the financial markets, it is a good time to search the Podcasts and allow yourself to be introduced to the world of financial markets and the roller coaster ride that is unfolding as you read this. Or if it is faith and hope that you need in these times, there are Podcasts and eBooks available that will help you explore.
Lastly, why not come out of the lockdown period feeling accomplished by decluttering. There is nothing quite like the feeling of clearing a mess!
This can be physical decluttering (e.g. your pantry, wardrobe or tool shed) or it can be decluttering your personal finances and setting yourself up right for the rest of 2020. Creating a budget if you do not current have one, tools from Sorted.org can be especially useful.
During times of uncertainty, it is also wise to check on your insurance coverage. To know what policies you have and how much you're spending on your covers.
Quashed makes it simple and easy to see all your insurance in one place and has features to help you find out how much you're really spending and to uncover your free insurance benefits from your credit cards. On top of that, Quashed makes it easy for you to share this information securely with your loved ones, so in an emergency or if you are uncontactable, your loved ones know exactly what protections are in place and can easily contact your insurers in a click.
Stay well, stay in one place and stay sane with the tips above. Check back here soon for more tips on how you can protect yourself, your loved ones and your valuables.