COVID – 19  At Home Spiritual Survival Plan – Step 2  – Plan Your Day

Many people find themselves at home and grounded during this pandemic.  Many of these are also finding themselves struggling to find meaning and purpose during this time of fear and  uncertainty primarily because of their loss of employment.  It is normal to feel this way!!! Why? Because whether we realize it or not, often much of our life meaning and purpose is actualized, manifested and fulfilled in or through or at one’s place of employment!!!

Yes, work is and can be good for the soul, for even a bad job often provides something that everybody needs: a community outside of their family and home that becomes part of one’s life…   Many great sitcoms and movies have been rooted in the community loves found at bad jobs that have great work communities… Even for the introverted prayer warriors, it is also often through their work community that many are able to find the people and stories – outside of their family and the news – to pray for and over…

Often, our meaning and purpose – which the Gospel speaks of simply as  loving and serving others – is often  ‘exercised or lived out’ in/at our work communities.  It is often a source from which many of our extended family members, friends and close acquaintances are often found. Losing our ‘work community’ is a very difficult reality to experience and bear and can not be completely replaced by picking up the telephone or connecting digitally with others online…

However, replacing the way that work tends to schedule, plan and give meaning to our daily and weekly life is something that most persons can and will have to work at creatively addressing, especially now finding themself grounded and at home…

Few are able to slow down enough to  acknowledge how  ‘work’ often can frame our daily and weekly lives…  This framing and scheduling of our lives by work is one manner that it veritably gives or provides actual meaning and purpose for us, that is, by structuring our days and weeks.  Holidays, children’s school lives and yearly vacations are other examples of realities that can frame the daily and weekly of our lives…

My core suggestion – to plan your day – sounds simple enough, but how can one do this without gettin’ bent outta shape and goin’ crazy?  In short, how can we BOTH live in the now of each day still celebrating life’s gift in faith and hope, yet also still work, plan, use and build ourselves up by taking advantage of this forced quarantined time?

I suggest breaking your day into four or five loosely timed sections of an hour to ninety minutes…   Sectioning off and planning each day from a common core of available options is one manner of giving, finding and creating meaning for oneself when locked down during these COVID -19 times…  Here are some suggestions…

Start your day with Prayer (see the previous article)

Grounding your day in God’s peace and love will give you hope for the day in these uncertain times. If there is any true certainty or peace to be found or had today, it is surely in God.  By placing yourself in God’s presence daily and receiving that grace, peace and love – your True daily bread – you will begin to increasingly walk in God’s peace, and not in fear, more and more each day.  It will begin to rest in you… To guide you… And to calm you more and more each seemingly different and uncertain day…

Plan for the obvious, like chores and for the daily activities that you will be doing around the house

For example, using cooking times to learn about cooking new recipes with family members… Or using it to listening to a family member’s very different music, or simply just shutting up and allowing another to freely ‘pontificate’ about their ideas, hopes and dreams… This simply takes all to agree on a common cooking time later in the day and you to begin planning and thinking before hand how all can share the activity in some nuanced way…

Plan to gather for some fun or relaxed times that naturally occur for all…

I stressed this because during these times of limited community gathering, any community that we are blessed to have, must be nurtured and cherished all the more during these tough times.  So, gathering for meals is a great time for community sharing (especially if there is a great desert to wait for at the end of dinner!)… A planned, late night cocktail or movie is another way for two busy parents to connect… You get the point…

Plan to learn something new and interesting during this time of forced quarantining…

If you have the capabilities, go to YouTube University and learn about new hobbies that you are interested in or, deepen an already established area of interest…

Plan for some form of physical exercise or an actual workout if possible

Go for walks, try a new online Pilates or dance workout, dust off the rarely use exercise equipment that you already have at home, etc. and start some kind of work out program at home!  Be determined to “wow the folks” when we all emerge in the summer (that’s not a joke)…

I have a friend with school-age children who timed the number of times he could go up and down their home’s central flight of stair in two minutes, and then challenged each of his four children (aged 5 – 13) to beat it!!  Needless to say, they got close and now want to raise him daily (lmao)!!! He’s already devised a series of small monetary prizes to keep them striving for more after they catch and surpass his total!  He has stumbled upon a fun gym class at home for his kids – and he loves the way it burns up their energy and makes them go to bed earlier (lol)!!!

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          As you now realize, one can have any number of various possible planned ninety minute sections to draw from to create and make each day, a unique and fun one with its own meaning and purpose.  The trick in successful planning, like budgeting, is to sit down and to do it beforehand!!!  I suggest mentally planning the next day the night before if there are things you know that you want or need to get done, or planning it out each morning after your prayer time…

You now have a basic blueprint and easy methodology for creatively planning your days and increased time.  I hope that it can be of some assistance in your quest to find and create daily meaning and purpose to replace that which work once fulfilled in our pre COVID – 19 days.

Now in retrospect, spend some time reflecting on how your old work schedule functioned to structure  your day and week, thus providing  purpose and meaning through its time structuring of your life.

Also, envision how you can begin now learning how to plan your daily life around what’s most important to you – surviving, loving, growing, serving and thriving more each day in the faith and in hope that is given by grace – instead of around a job.  This is one way of flipping the script on the unique and unprecedented COVID – 19 reality and walking by faith daily.