Do the Five
The World Health Organization has a simple campaign to help stop the spread of COVID-19 (and many other diseases): Do the Five! I imagine you’ve seen the PSA icon on Google:
1 Hands — wash them often
2 Elbow — cough into it
3 Face — don’t touch it
4 Space — keep safe distance
5 Home — stay if you can
I love the simplicity.
Practicing the Five
Here’s what I’m learning as I practice these 5 steps.
• Changing habits is as difficult as ever, and once I’ve washed my hands multiple times a day, I absolutely need to put lotion on them! Protecting the skin envelope feels important just now.
• Since I’m coughing into my elbow, I’m not so keen on elbow bumping as a greeting. Instead, I’ve been toe tapping or hip bumping, even back wiggling–but only with close friends!
• My left brain says I’m probably not touching my face any more than usual, but wow! I had no idea how often I do in fact touch my “T-zone”: eyes, nose, mouth. So, I’m contenting myself to touch under chin, side of my head. For expert inspiration on this, I’ve been re-watching RuPaul’s Drag Race! Learning to vogue in my spare time. ;-p
• Keeping safe distance on the whole hasn’t felt like such a change in some ways. As an introvert, it feels like society has taken a big shift toward my way of being. (Odd though.) My extrovert family and friends are going stir crazy, desperate for activity and interchange. Where I do feel this change keenly: no hugs or touching, no clients. It’s so strange to be someone who touches for a living, and then have that suspended.
• Home stay has been such a gift, not the least because we are lucky to have a home that suits us — a blessing in so many ways! Richard has been tending the garden as spring begins to really present itself; he’s been cleaning and fixing and puttering. I’ve been doing projects too: tidying, purging, spring cleaning comes early!
And Another Five
Steps to help us when anxiety or fear arises:
- Look around you.
- Find five things you can see,
- four things you can touch,
- three things you can hear,
- two things you can smell, and
- one thing you can taste.
Such a simple exercise — but what a wonderful way of coming into the present moment, with all our senses. The only thing I might add is to take a breath for each one of these senses. With this, we’re able to move from a thought-based orientation to a body-based orientation. Staying in the present moment and connected to our environment is a simple first step.
Take good care of yourself — with one 5 and another!