Staying Healthy (Mentally and Physically) From Home

Written By Charlotte Insurance on April 21, 2020. It has 0 comments.

a woman exercising and staying fit at home

It’s a high-stress time for everyone. COVID-19 has turned the world upside down, and it’s easy to fall out of good routines and into bad habits while at home. But staying healthy, both mentally and physically, is important — for your well-being and dealing with the strain of the news. It’s also easier to do than you may realize, even at home.

Eat Well

Please avoid panic buying and hoarding food (and other goods) during this time. It creates shortages for people who don’t have the opportunity to buy in bulk, and it reduces the healthy foods available for everyone. Grocery stores will continue to operate even during quarantines and shelter-in-place orders, so there’s no need to buy more than you need for a few weeks at a time.

  • You don’t have to avoid buying fresh produce right now. In fact, it may be more plentiful than non-perishable foods. Buy those fruits and vegetables, cut them up, and freeze them to help them last as long as possible.
  • If you do buy canned or boxed foods, look for low salt and low sugar as these are often much healthier options.
  • Skip buying more snacks than you normally would, especially if you know you’re prone to stress-eating. If snacks are important to you, focus on healthy snacks like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and more.

Stay Fit

Sheltering in place doesn’t mean we can’t go outside, so you have more fitness options than you may realize.

  • As long as you can safely maintain six feet of distance between you and others, you can walk, run, bike, hike, and enjoy other outside activities.
  • If going outside isn’t the best option, at-home workouts are easy to do. Use YouTube, fitness groups on social media, and even online options from your local gym to stay fit at home.
  • Any movement is good movement, so if you have gardening, raking, lawn work, and even a room to paint, it can help you stay physically fit.

Get Enough Sleep

Even in the best of times, most of us don’t get enough sleep. Now, with our stress at all time highs, it’s even more important. Sleeping well not only keeps you physically healthy, it helps reduce stress and anxiety.

  • Set a bedtime. Just because you don’t have a long commute anymore doesn’t mean you should stay up all night either.
  • Put your phone away before bed. Avoid scrolling in bed, as that keeps you up longer and makes it more difficult to fall asleep.
  • Use music, white noise, and even meditation apps to help you fall asleep at night. Try not to use the TV, as it can be too distracting and stimulating for good sleep.

Reduce Stress and Anxiety

Everyone is more stressed than ever before, and with good reason, but reducing stress and anxiety will keep us healthier for longer. Getting enough sleep is one way. Reducing your news consumption is another. And if you need an extra boost, consider yoga, meditation, and even journaling to help you slow down, breathe easier, and feel less anxious.

Take care of yourself now and in the future. We’re here for you. Contact Charlotte Insurance for all your insurance needs.

Creating a Productive Home Office Environment

Written By Charlotte Insurance on April 14, 2020. It has 0 comments.

a woman working from home with a baby who could use some work from home tips

If you’re working from home for the first time and not getting as much done as you thought you would, you’re not alone. Thanks to COVID-19, our working lives are turned upside down just as much as our social lives are. Being productive when you work from home doesn’t happen by magic, and much of your success is due to your home office.

Here are a few tips to create a home office space that makes it easy to get work done.

Designate a Space

Working from your bed or the couch sounds fun in theory until you realize you’d rather nap or binge watch Netflix. You don’t need a separate room for your home office, although it’s nice to have. It’s most important to create a space for work that’s separate from where you sleep or relax. A corner of your living room or dining room can be perfect. Use an existing table or order yourself a desk, depending on the space and your budget.

Give Yourself Light

In a perfect world, you’d work near a window to take advantage of natural light and enjoy a relaxing view. But if that’s not an option, commandeer a lamp from another room for your office space. No matter how much glow your laptop or computer gives off, you still need plenty of extra light to see. It also keeps you alert and makes it easier to focus on the work at hand.

Set Up a Good Desk Area

A few things go into making your desk work for you (instead of the other way around). Decide if you’re using a standing desk (maybe a countertop) or a seated desk. If you’re sitting, your chair needs to be comfortable and provide support for your back. A cushion or pillow will do the trick in a pinch. You also want to set up your monitor at eye level (on a stand or a stack of books) to avoid neck strain. As long as you’re comfortable, it’s easy to stay in one place and get work done.

Keep Your Space Neat and Tidy

From the tabs in your browser to the papers on your desk, how cluttered or tidy your work space is determines your productivity. Work on one thing at a time, whenever possible, and put things away as you finish with them. Stacks of paper, open documents, and the typical “clutter” of work slow you down when you’re at the office and at home.

Wear Comfortable Clothes

Unless you have a Zoom dress code to follow, dressing comfortably can make it easier to sit at your new home office desk to get work done. This doesn’t mean wearing the same pajamas for five days in a row, but allow yourself the luxury of wearing comfortable pants, shorts, or whatever you’d never be able to wear to the office that doesn’t pinch, gather, poke, or otherwise distract you.

You might not be able to replicate your office or cubicle at home, but you can make your home office a place you want to work. Here at Charlotte Insurance, we’re right there with you, figuring out new routines as we work from home, too. Rest assured though, we’re still here to help you with all your insurance needs and to answer questions.

How Coronavirus Impacts Home-Based Businesses

Written By Charlotte Insurance on April 8, 2020. It has 0 comments.

a mother running her home based business with her daughter in her lap amidst the covid-19 pandemic

Shelves are empty. Stores and businesses have shut down. Many more people are working from home than ever before. Coronavirus has touched every facet of life. As someone who owns a home-based business, you may be feeling the strain in different ways. If any of this feels familiar, you’re definitely not alone.

Shelter-in-Place and Stay-at-Home Orders Keep You Inside

If your home-based business included craft markets, vendor shows, or meeting clients in coffee shops, you’re already feeling the impact of COVID-19. Your in-person sales are down to almost nothing, and any plans you had for spring and summer income, as well as goods, are out the window.

It’s worth looking into the grant and loan programs available through the CARES Act. Find more information here.

Online Sales Fluctuating

For some business owners, online sales are booming — making it difficult to keep up with demand, a good problem to have. For other home-based businesses, online sales have dropped as your customers spend their money elsewhere. If business is up, take advantage of it while you can. And if it’s not, consider your financial options available through the federal government and/or your bank.

For anyone whose business is usually in-person only, now may be the time to open an Etsy shop, set up a website, and take things online. You may not see booming business right away (unless you sell reusable face masks!) but you’ll set yourself up for future success even after this crisis passes.

Kids at Home Take Up Work Time

We all love our children, and we’re glad they’re home where they can be safe. But let’s be honest — between their Zoom classes and need for multiple snacks a day, you’re probably not spending as much time on your business as usual. It means slowing down completely or pushing your work to the nights and weekends.

If the best way to get some work done is to hand your child a tablet or smartphone and let them play a game, we won’t judge. Working on your business is more challenging, but it may also be what keeps your mind off the news, too. Do what you need to do as a parent and a business owner.

Protecting Your Business is More Important Than Ever

Insurance for home-based businesses is more affordable than you may realize. Even as you wait to see what happens with coronavirus, other emergencies can still impact your business — home fires, storm damage, theft, and more. Protect your investment and yourself with a business insurance policy.

Basic home-based insurance policies include multiple forms of coverage:

  • Liability in case of injury, damage, and other forms of harm caused by your product or service
  • Business property coverage
  • Loss of business income
  • And more

While a new business insurance policy will be unlikely to help with the impact of COVID-19, it can help keep your home-based business afloat in many other instances. Contact Charlotte Insurance today to learn how we can help you protect your business.

Social Distancing Tips

Written By Charlotte Insurance on April 7, 2020. It has 0 comments.

rulers and measuring tapes representing social distancing efforts

Working from home, closed businesses, and stay-at-home orders have led to drastic changes in much of our lives. All of this is an effort to practice social distancing to slow the spread of COVID-19. It’s an important part of dealing with the pandemic we face, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

If you’re struggling with social distancing, here are a few tips.

What is social distancing?

We hear the term a lot, but not everyone knows what it means. Social distancing means keeping a safe distance from other people that you don’t already live with, at least six feet of space. It also means avoiding gathering spaces where several people may be; this includes schools, churches, event halls, public transportation, and public buildings like courthouses and libraries.

These efforts, when used in conjunction with quarantine and isolation for individuals diagnosed with or who fear they may have coronavirus, help prevent the spread of the virus. While staying at home and avoiding social spaces are difficult for many, social distancing can save lives.

How to cope with social distancing

Just because it’s necessary for our loved ones’ and the community’s safety doesn’t mean social distancing is easy. Many people feel a myriad of emotions like fear, anxiety, depression, anger, frustration, irritability, and even boredom and a lack of energy. You may experience all or some of these feelings, at varying times, especially as financial and health concerns begin to take over.

Here are some things that may help.

Get your news from reliable sources. While you’re at it, limit your news consumption. Make sure your news comes from good resources to limit unnecessary worry. It’s also important to take a break from the news, too. Spending too much consuming COVID-19 info can lead to more fear, anxiety, and even anger.

Follow a daily routine. There’s a good chance your days have changed completely. Maybe you work from home for the first time, or you have a very full house because the kids are all home. To give yourself a sense of normalcy and reduce your focus on the news, create and follow a routine that helps you get things done.

Connect with loved ones. It’s called “social distancing” but it’s more like “physical distancing.” Maybe you can’t meet for lunch or dinner, but you can Facetime, Skype, or connect in other ways with the people in your life. This is great for catching up, checking in, and distracting yourself from the news.

Maintain a healthy lifestyle. It’s not the end of the world if you’re eating a few more snacks or watching a lot more Netflix. But don’t neglect your health during this time, either. As long as you can stay away from people (by six feet or more), you can walk, run, bike, and do other outside activities. If going outside isn’t an option, look for at-home workouts online through your local gym or on YouTube.

Do things you enjoy. Yes, going to concerts or even the library may not be an option for now, but it’s important to do other things that make you happy. Work on your hobby at home. Read more books. Watch old movies you love. Catch up on podcasts or listen to old albums. In between the news, homeschooling your kids, and figuring out how to work from home, you need to do things that bring you joy. This helps you feel less anxious and angry.

Here at Charlotte Insurance, we’re doing our part to practice social distancing while also taking care of our clients. Your insurance needs don’t stop because of social distancing, and neither do we. Our team of dedicated agents are all setup to work remote and are ready to help you with all of your insurance needs. We will get through this together.