Saturday, June 13, 2020

COVIVING under the New Normal

I have come up with a new term #COVIVING (combination term for surviving covid19 and living under the new normal).  I will be using this for my future posts on FB, IG and Linked In when I write and share tips on living in the “new normal”.  

As we venture outside we need to take extra steps and be aware of those who may be around us at all times.  Most of us have followed the social distancing protocols since early-mid March but as the economy has opened and we become exposed to others who may not have been as diligent or may have had different levels of potential expose it will be critical to be extra precautious.  Because there was no national standard of protection the mitigatation efforts across states have been wide in range from full lockdown to re-opening while numbers have increased in cases such as in Florida and Texas.

This is alarming and makes me nervous.  For instance, while I plan to spend time down the Cape this summer there will be many visitors from other states who I may crosspaths with.  I have no way of knowing what their past protocols have been, if they are a-symptomic or had direct exposure while traveling to the Cape (simply by sitting on a plane with someone who may have the virus unknowingly).  Sadly I think we need to be on full alert and assume each contact can be a risk until proven otherwise.

Fortunately, I am able to work from home and have been following recommended protocols.  I am able to incorporate these into my day to day real estate services with virtual tools to help clients as well.  (If interested please let me know as I have started to share tips via Zoom sessions).

Below I have put together a list from an article in today’s Boston Globe written by Amanda Kaufman to follow as we enter Phase 2 and beyond to venture out. It is pretty comprehensive with CDC guidance as its base for basic ventures and as always common sense and responsibility is up to each of us. 
Going to a restaurant
Wear a cloth face covering as much as possible when not eating.

Maintain a social distance of 6 feet or more when in an entryway, hallway, or waiting area, or when dining with people who don’t live with you

Wash your hands when you arrive at the restaurant and when you leave. If you’re not able to wash your hands at a sink, use hand sanitizer

Choose food and drink options that are not self-serve to avoid using shared serving utensils

Call ahead and ask if staff are wearing face coverings

Going to the gym
Try to make reservations and check-in online when possible

Seek out facilities where you can exercise outdoors or gyms that provide virtual training sessions

Use hand sanitizer before using workout machines and wipe down equipment with disinfecting wipes

Don’t share equipment, like resistance bands and weightlifting belts, that can’t be cleaned between uses

Limit attending indoor group training sessions. If you do go to a group class inside, try to maintain as much social distance as possible and wear a face covering if it doesn’t interfere with your workout. Try to open the windows to increase airflow

Don’t hug, shake hands, or bump elbows with others

Wear a cloth face covering when interacting with people

Going on vacation
Book reservations and check in online, and use a mobile room key and contactless payment, if possible

Wear a cloth face covering in the lobby and other common areas

Consider taking the stairs, or wait to use the elevator until you can ride alone or with other people from your household

Request contactless delivery for room service orders

Try to minimize being in areas that may lead to close contact (within 6 feet) with others, like patios, lounging areas, spas, salons, and fitness areas

Ask about the hotel’s policies for cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces and items like pens, light switches, remote controls, elevator buttons, and phones

Refer to the CDC’s tips for traveling amid the coronavirus pandemic and cleaning your hotel room or lodgings

Having friends and family over

Try to host your get-together outdoors. If it’s not possible to be outside, make sure the space is well-ventilated by opening windows

Minimize close contact by verbally greetings guests instead of hugging, shaking hands, or bumping elbows

Wear a face covering when less than 6 feet apart from people or if you’re indoors

Wash your hands (or use hand sanitizer if you’re not able to access soap and water) when arriving and leaving the gathering. Provide single-use towels or napkins for drying hands so guests don’t share a towel

Arrange seating to allow for 6 feet of space. Those who live together don’t need to be 6 feet apart

Encourage guests to bring their own food and drinks

If you plan to serve food, designate one person who serves everyone to avoid multiple people touching serving utensils. If there are sharable items, like condiments, identify one person to serve them, too, or use single-use options, if possible

Wash and sanitize reusable items like napkins and tablecloths after the event

Ask guests to wash their hands before serving or eating food

Use gloves when taking out the trash and wash your hands after taking off the gloves

Provide cleaning supplies so guests can wipe down surfaces before they leave

Keep a list of attendees in case of future contact tracing

Going to a library

Use online reservations and check-out systems, if possible

Choose using a digital reader, like an iPad or a Kindle, when possible, instead of printed materials

Request curbside pick-up, if available. Wear a cloth face covering during exchanges

Wash your hands before and after exchanges

Clean and disinfect electronics, like laptops or iPads, and materials that are in plastic coverings, like CDs and DVDs during returns and exchanges

Getting your nails done

Call in advance to book an appointment to avoid waiting next to others. If you have to wait, maintain 6 feet of social distance

Wear a cloth face covering at all times while inside

Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before receiving your treatment and after touching common surfaces like counters, doorknobs, and faucets

Use cashless payment, if possible

Try to use a no-touch trash can

Wait in your car or outside until the salon can contact you over the phone when it’s your turn, if the salon offers that service

Going to the bank
Use drive-through banking services, ATMs, or mobile banking apps for routine transactions that don’t require face-to-face help

Wear a cloth face covering when doing in-person exchanges, and try to stay 6 feet apart from others

Use hand sanitizer after withdrawing or depositing money or visiting an ATM, and wash your hands thoroughly when you get home

What items to keep on you

The CDC recommends everyone keep on hand a cloth face covering, tissues, and hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol.

Staying safe during events

The CDC also released guidance for organizing and attending large gatherings, like concerts, sporting events, and political rallies. The guidelines come as people across the country are participating in protests against police brutality and racial injustice that can draw tens of thousands of people.

Public health officials say the “highest risk” of COVID-19 spread is at “large in-person gatherings where it is difficult for individuals to remain spaced at least 6 feet apart and attendees travel from outside the local area.”

As the days ahead still challenge each of us under the "new normal" please check my facebook page and linked in for tips and recommendations of dealing with the situation in context of the real estate market and life in general.  I am thinking of tweeting when I go places and don't see long lines to alert my followers with the following #'s (#nameofplace, #coviving).  Feel free to follow my lead and share this to trend as well.  This idea came to me after reading an article in today's WSJ "Is There a Line at Trader Joe's).  Also please follow me on IG and my website.  If you have any questions feel free to reach out directly to me as well at  

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