One of our own, our design assistant Jenny, is a registered nurse who also works part-time in the Emergency Department of a major Chicago hospital. Jenny graciously helped put together this post to provide all of us valuable information on staying healthy and well during COVID-19.
Jenny has all of our love and support right now, as well as a heartfelt thank-you that extends to all the other healthcare and frontline workers for the work they do everyday–and especially now during this crisis.
Due to her role as a healthcare professional, we want to share resources that have helped educate us, give us comfort, and offer ways to support our local community. Jenny has gone back to nursing almost full-time since the crisis began and I’m personally in awe of her dedication, spirit and love for others. We LOVE YOU Jenny!!
During periods of isolation it’s more important than ever to check in with yourself, your friends and family, and your community. There is a lot of pressure on ourselves right now, and we want to tell you that it’s okay to feel what you’re feeling. Know that we will get through this together!
Reliable Sources of Information on COVID-19
With the spread of misinformation it is crucial more than ever to use up-to-date, credible primary sources with clear information to spread facts–not fear. Use these links below from the CDC, Hopkins Medicine, and the state of Illinois as a guide to information about the virus and the latest recommendations.
State of Illinois: Coronavirus
Wellness + Mental Health Support
More than ever it is important to support your mind and body. Remember to be more gentle with yourself during these unprecedented times. Finding peace may look different to you on different days. Some days you may need a mindless distraction to center yourself, and other days you may need movement to find stillness. Listen to your body and what it’s craving. What has been helping us the most right now is a mixture of meditation, cooking, and exercise. We’ve included some favorite links we’ve been using to help support us. Ask yourself: what has been helping you? Is it by delving into a good book? Maybe it’s listening to a favorite record you haven’t played in a while. Found a funny Instagram account? Humor really is the best medicine. Think about what fills your cup!
Insight and help understanding what you may be feeling right now:
Harvard Business Review: That Discomfort You’re Feeling is Grief
Support your body with fresh, local food from Green City Market, the farmers market that just launched a new online platform for deliveries:
There are a lot of claims that you can “boost” your immune system. This article has expert advice on separating the myths from the real ways to support your body:
Real Simple: Immune System Myths
Many exercise studios and gyms are providing free workouts online or trials right now. Check out your favorite studio or teacher’s website, and see what they may be offering. Here are some of our favorites:
An extensive list of some of the best free workouts available right now via Shape:
Calm your mind with a popular meditation app that is now offering some free meditations:
Make your own sourdough starter! Baking bread can be a meditative process, and The Kitchen has a great resource on making sourdough from scratch:
The Kitchn: How to Make Your Own Sourdough Starter
Cook for your body and your soul with Alison Roman, of the New York Times, with her guide to cooking during a pandemic:
Alison Roman’s Guide to Cooking in a Pandemic
How to Help Your Community
When the world feels like it’s out of control or you feel helpless, it’s comforting to give back to your community and to those who may be feeling the effects of the pandemic the most.The best (and easiest) way is to reach out to your loved ones and see how they’re doing. Know a healthcare hero? Text, call, or email them to tell them “thank you” and ask how you can help. We’ve also included some links to local Illinois and Chicago programs, but if you’re living elsewhere think about who you’d like to support, and check out their websites to look for ways to contribute. There are endless ways to donate or volunteer, and by supporting those you love or people you’ve never met you can spread the message that we’re all in this together.
If you’re looking for how to donate personal protective equipment to local Chicago hospitals, here are important guidelines of what they are accepting and how to give:
NBC Chicago: How to Donate PPE in Illinois
Help respond to the increasing need of food to vulnerable populations:
There is an urgent need for blood donations at this time. Please consider donating if you are able. Donating is simple, and it’s free. An important message from the U.S. Surgeon General: “You can still go out and give blood. We’re worried about potential blood shortages in the future. Social distancing does not have to mean social disengagement.” Find where you can donate blood locally:
Support your favorite, local businesses and buy gift cards. Look up their websites and instagrams profiles; chances are they may link to a way to support them! Check out the many ways to support local Chicago hospitality workers: