As the country starts to get to grips with the first full day of lockdown, people are coming to terms with this new way of living in their own way.
Announcements (or lack of)
Last night’s announcement produced, as you would expect, lots of questions. But this morning, most people with a mobile phone contract of some form or another, received a government message linking to the Guidelines produced for a bit more clarity.
Sadly we are still waiting for any kind of announcement of what help the Government can provide for the 5 million self-employed people now. Thousands of personal trainers, coaches, therapists, and other fitness professionals are among those whose business has all but dried up because of social distancing and the need to stay at home. Adapting their business to suit the current environment isn’t easy, despite the fact that people still need to be mended, and still want to keep fit. Many in the fitness industry are not particularly comfortable with technology since theirs is a very hands-on occupation, so it might feel daunting to suddenly try to deliver services online The financial problem is a complex one for the government to solve, as in many cases there isn’t an obvious measure to which income can be proved. This is why it has taken them so long. Some of the media believe an announcement is imminent, maybe tomorrow. Let’s hope so for the sake and sanity of all our self-employed friends.
If you do have a coach, PT or physical therapist that you visit regularly, how about checking in on them to see how they are doing, maybe pay for your next sessions in advance? Along with millions of other self-employed people right now, they will be finding this particularly challenging right now.
Most communities now seem to have a version of a local Coronavirus Support Facebook Group, and Portsmouth is no different. I joined the group to find out what was being done locally in case there was anything I could do to support anyone nearby. I am still working full time (from home), but that doesn’t mean I couldn’t get something or help one of my neighbours. Some people just need information, others need a sense of community. There are over 6,660 members on our group today, and I’ve been really heartened to see how everyone is coming together to help each other. Young adults and teenagers have posted, offering to do anything from walking pets, to doing shopping and collecting medication. The community is sharing information on things like who is delivering fresh fruit and veg, or the fact that florists are giving away their excess flowers to people who need a pick me such as front line healthcare workers.
But even better than all the community sharing is the fact that people are just trying to cheer each other up. They’ve stopped moaning about loo roll hoarders and started putting their children’s rainbow pictures in their windows. Humour is being used to break the tension, and I have a feeling that now we are in lockdown, most people are now just accepting that it’s the right thing to do, and in a typically British way, we are adopting the mantra
It really seems like people have started communicating with each other in a caring way. After all, we really are all in this one together.
Joy in the everyday things
I wanted to create a montage of images of positive things people were doing to keep themselves cheerful, and it received an amazing response. It was a bit like asking people what they were grateful for, but without actually asking the question (which many people feel uncomfortable answering).
I’d like to share some of my favourites below
I love that people are appreciating the time spent with their children, or having the opportunity to do more cooking, or exploring their creativity. There were hundreds more wonderful images too that I would have loved to have shared.
Whilst the unfolding crisis is a global tragedy on so many levels, it’s important that people embrace this possibly once in a lifetime opportunity to remember what’s really important to them at home. It’s giving millions of people a enforced time out, which in our 24 hour world is maybe not such a bad thing.
Check back tomorrow and let’s see what day 3 has to offer.