Greetings HBCU Family. First of all, I hope you and your loved ones are all healthy and safe during this collective global time out (aka the pandemic). With support from each other we will survive this!
We are all experiencing an unprecedented time in our lives and are all facing significant challenges in one way or another. 2020 is quickly unfolding as the decade of major transformation in all areas of life as we know it.
One of the most fundamental aspects of the human experience has been severely suppressed do the widespread outbreak of COVID-19. Social distancing has severed our sense of community and put public gathering on pause.
So many things we are accustom to and sometimes take for granted has been disrupted including education, religion, sports and entertainment. Not to mention all of the small businesses, major corporations, retail, transportation, and restaurants have all been affected.
HBCUs have taken a direct hit like many other educational institutions having to temporarily close in repose to the outbreak. The outcome will more than likely have a more long-lasting negative effect than with their counterparts.
We’re all feeling various levels of widespread fear and anxiety for sure. However, we have the choice to allow the fear to deplete our energy or use it to strengthen our position in our personal and professional lives.
You may have noticed that many savvy companies and institutions have quickly adjusted their business models to address the economic impacts of the corona virus pandemic.
Because of the recent federal mandate of no more than 10 people gathering in one place — many restaurants and fast food companies have closed their dining rooms and shifted to a 100% take-out strategy.
For food delivery apps are offering “no contact” deliveries. Some are even expanding their services to deliver medical equipment and food to communities in need during the pandemic.
Amazon just announced their ‘Prime Cinema’ platform to allow members to watch “In-theater” movies from home, this is perfect timing now that most of the movie theaters are closed.
Schools districts and workplaces have launched remote platforms for students and employees to work from home across the country.
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There is a lesson for us to take away are the moves public companies are making to stay in business and remain relevant in turbulent and uncharted waters.
While on lock down we can make our own moves and change our models to land in a better position when we come out the other side of this pandemic.
For those of us who have the time, means and motivation to be productive while participating in social distancing – there are several opportunities to survive and thrive in the future.
Here are our Top 5 Ways the HBCU Community Can Survive and Thrive in a Pandemic
1. Turn a skill, passion or hobby into an internet business
With widespread stores temporarily closing and more people making purchases online than ever due to mandatory isolation – there is an increased opportunity for the entrepreneurs to get in the game.
It’s time to work on the project you’ve been putting off. You know the book you said you would write, or the website you wanted to launch or that YouTube channel you planned host.
Don’t delay, it’s time to take action. Think about what skills you have. If you any knowledge about a particular subject (you don’t have to be an expert) – you can turn it into a digital product, service or course.
Platforms that can help side hustles include: Udemy, UpWork, Wrapify, Scribie, Ask Wonder, Beta Testing, and Plieo.
For the creatives and artisans some options include Esty, Zazzle, CafePress, Society6 and RedBubble.
2. Become a student financial education
Most of us didn’t learn how to effectively manage money, create passive income streams or investing from our families.
The school system didn’t teach us about money either. So, the same viscous cycle repeats itself for each generation to come. Now is the time increase our economic empowerment.
We need to start by decreasing debt, avoid money traps, paying ourselves first, and make our money work for us instead of the other way around.
There are several websites, podcast, E-books, and videos to get started.
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3. Find outlets to reduce stress and anxiety
If you’re look at the news or scrolled through your favorite social media site for longer than 30 seconds it’s impossible not to feel triggered.
Plan in a daily media break from the widespread fear and take an opportunity to get out in nature and sit still for at least 10 minutes. Stay active by walking the neighborhood or riding a bike. One of the best options is to go to a park where you can still see people, but keep you distance if needed.
If you don’t want to be outdoors, try using a mini trampoline to get exercise in your home. Another approach is to quiet the mind. Find a quit place at home to journal, mediate or just relax in your favorite chair while listening to binaural beats on YouTube.
The best cure to alleviate stress is laughter. Search for your favorite movies, sitcoms and stand-up routines online or break out your old DVD collection.
4. Level-up your health and wellness
With all this talk about viruses, many of us have become increasingly concerned about the status of our immune systems.
Many local drug store shelves have been depleted of Vitamin C. Quick tip: Try looking for Vitamin C with Rose Hips instead.
Other powerful alternatives to research that boost your immune system, and helps with toxins, bacteria, and viruses are Pau D’arco tea, activated charcoal and silver supplements.
This is a good time to start learning more about herbal teas, essential oils, tinctures, supplements and all the natural remedies your elders used to tell you about.
Note: This is not medical advice. Do your research and consult a qualified medical practitioner.
Another option to consider is taking small steps towards growing your own food. Start by supplementing your groceries by starting a Victory Garden that include vegetables, fruit and herbs.
Use a seed starter kits in small pots, cups or crates. Gardening also helps with stress and anxiety as well. It a great project for families too.
5. Don’t be scared, Be prepared!
Regardless if you live in a small town or big city, everyone needs to be prepared for events such as a pandemic and other situations that could negatively impact our normal day-to-day lives.
Including local catastrophes and national disasters to the global pandemic we’re experiencing now. There are a number of essential tools, equipment and resources you should have in your survival kit to be prepared in a crisis situation.
Your survival kit should a solar charger, emergency weather radio, multi-functional tool, fire started, compass, utility knife, compact flash light, first aid supplies, emergency drinking water and emergency food rations.
You should have something to store these items in that can easily be taken with you in a moment’s notice such as a military style tactical backpack.
I’ve compiled a list of recommended products in our HBCU Amazon Shop to help you in your research for putting together your own survival kit during a pandemic and other crisis events. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. This helps cover our expenses for this website.
At the end of the day we all must work toward becoming more self-sustainable and independent. The world we live in today is a reminder of how precious life is and the things in life that matter the most – Our health, our family and friends, our communities and leaving a legacy for future generations.
I will breakdown these 5 steps into into individual posts so we can get into the details, strategies and tactics for success in the upcoming weeks. If you have specific questions about the approaches I’ve outlined – send us a message on our contact page.
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