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After you have adjusted for/accounted for your physiological needs, you can move onto the next layer within your Crisis Protocol—your personal safety. This includes your physical safety, as well as your emotional, and financial health.
- Physical safety
Feeling physically safe starts with asking the question, “What am I doing right now to care for my body and protect its health?”
There are also a lot of systemic issues when it comes to equal access to such things as preventive care, supplements, whole foods, and insurance. So before we cover our short-list of precautions you can take to protect your physical health in the midst of a crisis, we want to acknowledge these systemic health care issues first and foremost—especially if you’re worried about getting the care you need and paying for that care whenever you need it.
So with these systemic issues in mind, my additional questions are:
Do you have a daily practice that supports the overall well-being of your body?
- Our own daily practice (as recommended by our doctors) = 10 minutes of time in the sun before 10am, drinking lots of water, 8 hours of sleep, daily supplements, light exercise (i.e. a 30-min walk or some yoga), breathwork, guided meditations, and epsom salt baths.
Do you have access to medical care for if/when you need it?
- Even though Scott and I now have an amazing team of doctors caring for us, this wasn’t always the case. There were many years when our only medical care option was a local Urgent Care. Even so, knowing the best Urgent Care in our vicinity (which we’d find by researching Yelp, Google, etc.) gave us such peace of mind. Similarly, using Teladoc (a teledoctor service) has been such a gift to us. If you have insurance, the fee for booking a Teladoc session might be nominal or waived completely. They also have options for those paying out of pocket. Also, whenever we’ve needed to fill a prescription, GoodRX has made it easy to find the most affordable price (or pharmacy) in our area.
- For COVID-19 specifically, myCovidMD—which was created by 3 female ER doctors—is helping under-resourced communities get free testing and access to telehealth services during the Coronavirus Public Health crisis.
The next layer of safety we want to address is your financial health.
- Financial safety
Feeling financially safe starts with asking the question, “How much money do I need every month to cover my most basic needs?”
If you do not know this number, it will be impossible to calculate which action you need to take next (i.e. how much money you’ll need to pull from your savings, what non-essential expenditures you’ll need to cut, how long can you sustain your financial baseline—even if no new money is coming in, or how much new money you’ll need to make to reach your baseline every month).
Note: If you are stressed about new money coming in, we will help you create more cash flow (and cash reserve) later on in this guide. All you need to do right now is calculate your personal financial baseline. We’ll help you figure out HOW to meet (and exceed) that baseline once we talk about your business finances.
- Mental/Emotional safety
Feeling mentally/emotionally safe starts with asking the question, “Is my mental health suffering and do I need extra support in this season?”
We have fought many battles with mental health in our own personal experiences with trauma after years of struggling with codependency, addiction, depression, anxiety, grief, and anger. If you’ve listened to our Mental Health + Trauma episode of Nobody Talks About This, then you already know this part of our story and how we sought help and regained our mental health through trauma counseling.
But in case you haven’t heard us say this before:
Whether you’re recognizing old patterns, thoughts, and feelings as they’re reappearing in this season or you’re struggling to understand why new symptoms are showing up, just know that trauma that was left unhealed in your past might be currently amplified in the present.
The most difficult part of any crisis—especially a global crisis—is that there’s nothing we can do to “escape” the trauma. We can’t stay busy enough. We can’t distract ourselves enough. We can’t mask it enough—with vacations, deadlines, adventures, and friends.
In some ways, that can make this season incredibly dark and heavy, yet in other ways, the lack of escape and our urgent need of healing is what can make traumatic seasons—which are filled with deep loss, grief, and pain—seasons of simultaneous breakthrough.
In addressing your mental health needs, please, please, please remember: Knowing “what trauma is” and “healing your trauma” are two very different things. Knowing that trauma exists is simply the first step. Which is why the question then becomes:
Do you have the mental health support you need in this season?
- If yes, then we recommend keeping this support (as a non-negotiable expense) throughout this crisis. If no, then we highly recommend listening to our podcast episode on Mental Health + Trauma and digging into all the additional resources we’ve linked for you on our podcast website.
- Also important to note: Some insurances are currently offering free teletherapy right now and many therapists are offering their services on a sliding scale. You can also search this website for free or reduced-cost counseling and other mental health services in your community.
- Are you and your family in a safe environment?
- If not, can you relocate to a new environment or alter your existing environment to make it feel safer?
- Are you getting the medical care and/or medication that you need?
- If not, spend some time researching your best medical care options based on your current situation. We provided some ideas and resources above.
- Are you actively nurturing your physical wellbeing? What are some daily rituals that you could gradually introduce to take better care of yourself and your body?
- Ideas may include: Epsom salt baths, time in the sun, nature walks, family dance parties, yoga, meditation, etc.
- What non-essential expenses can you cut out in this season?
- Note: If you’re struggling to determine which bills and debts are essential and which ones aren’t, this quick overview should help.
- How much cash reserve do you have? If no other income came in, how long could your cash reserve/savings provide for you?
- How much income do you have coming in right now?
- How much income do you need to cover your most essential expenses?
- If you find yourself struggling mentally or emotionally, we recommend pursuing additional support. In addition to the resources we provided above, these are resources you can immediately download or access from your phone/computer (at little to no cost).
- The Science of Well-Being (Yale’s highest rated class about increasing your happiness and building productivity habits) is currently free for a limited time.
- Todd Herman (a peak performance coach) created this mental health checklist + video so that you can personally track your mental health from day to day.
- Here are 10 Virtual Therapy and Mental Health Apps to Cope With Coronavirus Stress
- There’s also Lift: A science-based app for depression and anxiety and Turn: A science-based app for substance abuse
- Note: LIFT is offering a free one year subscription for anyone who joins in April! Email firstname.lastname@example.org for information.
- If you need urgent support, hotlines, or access to resources local to you: here’s a detailed list to bookmark for immediate support.
- Or if you are not located in the US, here is a list of international support lines.
Disclaimer: None of the information provided in this guide constitutes financial, legal, or medical advice. For complete disclaimer, please review our terms and conditions.