The Working from Home Toolbox for Adults, Youth, and Families
Stress management tips and strategies for adults, children, & families
Updated March 27, 2020
This list is a working document. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any corrections.
Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) many professionals have made the sudden shift from the corporate office to the home office. This sudden shift has left very little room for an adjustment period to a new work environment.
Little time to adjust, coupled with school closures, worries about childcare, and concerns about COVID-19 have left many professionals feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Below you will find helpful resources for stress management strategies that can be incorporated into you and your family’s daily routine.
Resources for Adults
- 4-7-8 Breathing Video (Youtube)
- 3 Breathing Exercises Video: “Calm breathing guide” (Youtube)
- Doing Progressive Muscle Relaxation (uofmhealth.org)
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation Video: reduce tension in your body (Youtube)
- Leaves on a stream: learn to notice your thoughts and reduce overthinking (Youtube)
- Headspace: download the app to your iphone or android and explore the world of meditation (headspace.com)
- Liberate app: Meditation app by and for the Black and African Diaspora available via itunes, Google Play and Android (liberationmeditation.com)
Strategies for Children and Teens
Developmentally appropriate tips and tricks for talking to children and teens about COVID-19
- Help children find positive ways to express disturbing feelings like fear and sadness. Each child has their own way of expressing emotions. Sometimes participating in a creative activity, such as playing and drawing, can facilitate this process. Minors are relieved if they can express and communicate their feelings in a safe and supportive environment.
- Checking in with children and teens about their social media use during this time will be very important. We all have a tendency to seek out information when trying to make sense of a novel experience. Setting time limits for social media use will be helpful to reduce anxiety about the constantly changing information on COVID-19.
- Maintain family routines in daily life as much as possible, especially if children are confined to the home. Provide attractive age-appropriate activities for children. As much as possible, encourage children to continue playing and socializing with others, even if it is only within the family.
- Talk about COVID-19 with your children, be honest and use appropriate information according to their age. If your children are concerned, addressing the issue together will make it easier to manage their anxiety. Children watch the emotions and behaviors of adults for clues on how to manage their own emotions in difficult times.
- If a minor needs to be separated from their primary caregiver, due to exposure, make sure that regular contact with parents or caregivers is maintained during these periods with either 1) twice daily scheduled phone or video calls or 2) other appropriate communication for his age.
Stress Reliever Exercises for Children:
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (starfall.com)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (play.prodigygame.com)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (typingclub.com)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (Scholastic)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (pbskids.org)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning (Khan Academy)
- Learn more with this interactive academic learning: Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems (Youtube)
The below activities can be incorporated into daily family routines and can be great to help with transitions from one activity to the next (e.g., switching from work to dinner).
Before a meal, as a family come together and do one of the below and then spend time talking about each family members’ experience of the activity.
Family Stress Relievers
- Article on managing stress and anxiety (cdc.gov)
- Learn 17 Highly effective stress relievers (verywellmind.com)
- Relaxation techniques to reduce stress (webmd.com)
- World largest digital library: Free Ebooks for 30 days for patients (scribd.com)
- Personal guide to meditation: Noting Your Emotions (self-compassion.org audio file)
- Personal guide to meditation from the University of California San Diego Mindfulness Center: Body Scan (health.ucsd.edu audio file)