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THIS ROLLER COASTER CALLED LIFE

There could not have been a more perfect image than this to illustrate #thisrolldercoastercalledlife right now with the Covid 19 pandemic sweeping through nation after nation. The entire world is trying to deal with unprecedented problems as best they can. No-one was ready for what we are facing now.

As if the life we had been leading until now wasn’t perfect before all this happened, many people have come to realize that it wasn’t so bad after all.

We all have stressors and strains in many areas of life and most can handle what is dished up. It is however not so easy when one gets thrown a curveball out of the blue. Things happen that we have absolutely no control over. Covid 19 being just one of many things that could assail us.

As my mother would have said, this being said and all things being equal, it is what it is, and it is up to us to deal with whatever assails us in the best way we can.

We may feel out of control as far as this virus is concerned, but let us find ways in which to take back control of our own life by putting right what we can.

Here are a few things that may be affecting you, and suggestions I hope you might find helpful.

MONEY SHORTAGE

This could be brought about by –

OVERSPENDING

How easy it is to overspend during the festive season, then there are the Black Friday Specials, and January sales.

These are all very tempting but as you may have found out, can leave you strapped for cash if not budgeted for.

This, unless you really went wild, is a temporary problem that can, with careful management, be sorted out over the next couple of months

JOB LOSS OR REDUCTION IN SALARY

The joy of working from home

A case in point. The other day I was told of a father and his grown son who both owned property but due to the son losing his job and the father struggling to keep his home going came up with a plan which has benefitted them both.

The son sold his property and they renovated the bigger property, that of the father into two self-contained flats.

Fortunately, the son was able to start up a business from home and is now on hand to help his ageing father should he require help.

This arrangement has been an amazing solution for them. It took planning, negotiation, and goodwill to get it all sorted out but both of them are so happy with the arrangement.

When doing anything like this, please be sure of your boundaries concerning privacy.

Have everything that pertains to money and property sorted out with a lawyer. This protects both parties should anything untoward happen,  when everything is legally sound you can both rest easy in the knowledge that you are both protected.

Fortunately, in this day and the age of the internet and access to business worldwide, the opportunities for online work are there, and there are more people working online, in the relative safety of their own home.

The amazing thing about working from home is that you can set up anywhere in the house, or even in the garden if the laptop is charged.

It is a blessing not to have to travel in bad weather, but to rather look out your window onto a beautiful scene.

At present my son and daughter-in-law are both working from home as well as their son doing his online school work, and the other son sending out his C.V.

Fortunately for granny, the lounge is unoccupied, well that is besides sharing it with the cat and dog, so she has room to relax in.

If you think back not so many years ago none of this was possible. If you need to earn extra money to get back on your feet, or just to survive, check out what is out there.

When you do, check very carefully if it is a scam or not. If the odds are too good it could be a scam.This Roller Coaster Called Life

THE UPS AND DOWNS OF SCHOOLING DURING SHUTDOWN

Just when we think things are getting better, there are fewer cases of Covid, the government relaxed the shutdown, then boom, bang back we are to square one.

More and more cases of the dreaded virus. More stringent shutdown procedures, curfews to consider, schools closed, for the time being, etc. etc. etc.

School and university fees need to be paid. Even though the students are not back taking classes in the school or university building, they still need to be doing the work required of them.

Once again, it comes down to the access of the internet and computers which is such an integral part of learning today.

It is not only the work that needs to be done but also the fees to be paid. All of this takes careful planning and budgeting.

There is also the option of Home Schooling which takes hard work and commitment on behalf of the parent and children involved.

Not every parent is able to home school their child. It takes an enormous amount of patience, besides which, not all parents are at home during the day. Many families need both parents to work to make ends meet.

Cottage School is also an option. One of my grandsons took this option with fantastic results.

SPORTING ACTIVITIES FOR THE FAMILY

The importance of being active during this time is crucial on so many levels.

With the changes, we have all had to make at this time, changing the way we keep active has also changed.

This is especially evident in the change for children.  Not having the opportunity of taking part in group activities and sport, they find themselves stuck in the house playing on their digital paraphernalia and not enjoying spending time in the fresh air.

Besides keeping the body working well, warding off depression and that way being able to cope with the day to day stressors life throws at us.

Here are some great ideas for exercising at any time of life.

  • WALKING –  Has so many benefits.  This is a wonderful way of seeing the changing of the seasons as you check out all the gardens along the way.  You can even lose weight just by walking.

It is wise to wear good walking shoes, especially if you are planning to walk along mountain paths.  By wearing the correct gear,  perhaps even using a walking stick or pole to help you along in tricky areas you can get a great workout. without any jarring on the joints making it perfectly safe as long as you watch where you are going, look out for the dips or rocks on the path.

One of the wonderful things about walking is the unexpected finds along the way. My beloved dad used to walk a lot, with his trusty walking stick, he would turn over anything of interest and examine whatever it was in minute detail. He was the most curious man I knew.

It is even better if you have a dog on a lead to keep you company and also safe. By varying your pace, you can get a perfect workout, when the dog decides to stop for a sniff around, use this time to do a few stretches.

It doesn’t matter what other people think.

  • SWIMMING – One of my favourite sports is so soothing. As you swim you can forget any problems you might have, and come out of the water exhausted but refreshed, ready to take on the world.

As with all sporting activities, wear the correct gear. Wear a cap to keep the water out of your ears, goggles to protect your precious eyesight, and for a good workout wear flippers. This creates a bit of drag on your legs and will improve their strength and muscle tone.

  • CYCLING, EITHER ROAD OR MOUNTAIN

This great activity is really good fun.  Great cycling coaching here.

The bicycle I rode all during my childhood is such a far cry from the fantastic bicycles available now. Of course one needs to purchase one which would suit your needs.

It would be senseless to purchase a road bike if you intended to take up mountain biking.

The stressors meted out on a mountain trail would ruin an ordinary bicycle, just as it is essential to wear the correct safety gear.  Accidents can and do happen so it is wise to take as much precaution as possible.

Naturally, as with all sport, you take it at whatever pace you choose. It is wise to begin slowly and build up your prowess.

  • CANOEING OR KAYAKING – Another way of enjoying nature. Being out on the water is such a pleasure.
    Feeling relaxed but getting a fantastic overall workout

Although it looks so peaceful and serene, don’t be fooled, when one is paddling along be it with or against the current, it is hard work.

Whatever sport you decide to try, enjoy the time getting to know the outdoors and the strength you are able to build up, not only in your body but also in your mental wellbeing.

Needless-to-say, there are many I haven’t touched on, and more than likely you have many suggestions but whatever you do, enjoy.

Sporting activities of any kind enable you to cope with the stress of having to spend so much time alone.

PLEASE TELL ME

How are you coping with #thisrollercoastercalledlife it would be so interesting and helpful if you gave us ideas and tips on the wonderful ways we could be doing just that.

You, no doubt, will be able to name some reasons I haven’t even considered.

Please, be sure to share your wisdom on coping with this life which people now term, “the new normal”.

Jill Alexa du Preez

One Comment

  1. Aah, what a wonderfully refreshing post. I love these ideas and your positive, yet realistic outlook. I also love the wealth of personal experience you bring to the table with your personal anecdotes of friends and relatives. Thank You for sharing your wisdom and positivity. What a breath of fresh air.

    I think we’ve been coping pretty well during lockdown. Yes, true, there’s been too much digital but fortunately, we got a new puppy during lockdown and he has brought so much balance to our lives. We love our daily walks (and usually walk him twice a day) and the whole family enjoys playing with him. The most difficult time was when we were in full lockdown and having to homeschool as well as do all the housework and work-work. Have to admit the housework suffered. Something’s got to give, right?

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