By Ashley Snodgrass, Executive Account Manager
Are there still any news junkies out there? In light of recent events, I know plenty of folks who say they can’t read the anxiety-inducing news. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, I had friends and acquaintances who refused to read the news because of constant barrage of articles on war, politics, and crime. Maybe I’m just a glutton for punishment, but I love to read the news. I always have.
I should clarify, I do not like to read the news because I enjoy observing the calamity. I am often overwhelmed with the conflicts occurring, and I do not revel in tragedy. If you’re familiar with the Kolbe Index, I score high on the Fact-Finder index, which means my reaction to nearly any question is often, “I need more information.” Good or bad news in the world, being informed is a critical piece to maintaining society and holding local and national leaders accountable.
I’ve recently discovered an app that has made this commitment to news reading easier and more enjoyable. Knewz is a news aggregator that brings together articles from a variety of sources, organized by topic. If you want to read articles about the Race for the White House, or Coronavirus, or the Royals, you can sort through that grouping of articles to read all about that specific topic. On a personal note, I strongly prefer the iPhone app to the desktop experience. The iPhone app is easy to navigate and provides a streamlined view, but I find the desktop experience to be overwhelming.
In my experience with Knewz, I’ve found that the articles are delivered from different sources, so it is easier to see all the related articles, instead of switching between tabs to look at four different news sites. This app has helped me in my goal to remain informed. Regardless, it is always important to think critically about the information presented in news articles, and do additional research when necessary.
By Aimee Johnson, RISQ Consulting Account Executive
Working in employee benefits during a pandemic equates to clients needing more than ever. This is a great thing as it presents a tremendous opportunity to show our worth – and we are worth it (in my not so humble opinion).
The problem here, is that my 11-month old has no idea there is a pandemic occurring and she still wants your attention, needs to eat, nap, and have her diaper changed. Go figure. She obviously didn’t get the memo that Mom and Dad still have to work and can’t play all day.
I, by no means, have it the worst or even bad. I am thankful to have a job that allows me to continue working and helping others during this time. We are all adjusting to the new way of life.
Chloe I. Cooney articulates what I, and I imagine, many other parents are feeling right now. I do not have any school age children, but I can still relate to her and her husband’s situation. I hope you, too, can find solace in knowing you are not alone and it’s OK if you are not OK right now. We are in this together and we will persevere.
Here’s to that extra glass of wine, extra push on the treadmill, “not hearing” that “Mom” or “Dad”, or binge watching your favorite show. Whatever it takes to take the edge off and feel OK during these unprecedented times.
I, for one, am thankful I was able to witness my daughter crawl. I may have otherwise missed this monumental milestone in her life if things had been “normal”. Try to find the silver lining and be thankful for our health, family, love, and ability.
Link to Article: https://www.wbur.org/cognoscenti/2020/04/10/parenting-in-the-time-of-coronavirus-chloe-i-cooney?utm_medium=social&utm_term=nprnews&utm_campaign=npr&utm_source=facebook.com&fbclid=IwAR3jL71nVA_SkaNNgiQS2I1snPiG5Xql2ghb8S_Nv8d1-uoVoqGA9k2tsC0
By Jessica Carlson, RISQ Consulting Employee Benefits Consultant
Since school has changed to distance learning, and I am working from home, I have been with my 14 year old for the last three weeks and will be for the foreseeable future.
This will either tear us apart or bring us closer. I for one would prefer that it make us a stronger family so I have been looking for things to do together to keep our sanity.
I came across this list of things to do with your teens while you are stuck at home. There are many great ideas in the linked blog that we are going to try out (although I do not know how a sit up and pushup competition would fare around here).
Here’s to surviving the quarantine and keeping your sanity! Good luck!
By Shayla Dablemont, RISQ Consulting Individual and Family Benefits Consultant
“A dog is one of the remaining reasons why some people can be persuaded to go for a walk” – O.A. Battista
Fido does more for you than just provide companionship. As if you really need more reasons to cuddle your furry friend, one of the side effects of owning a dog is living longer. According to a study by a peer-reviewed journal from the American Heart Association, dog owners had a 24% risk reduction for death from any cause.
Owning a dog also increases your opportunities to exercise since most dogs need 30-60 minutes of physical activity per day. Often times, pet owners take their dogs on a daily walk to make sure that they are burning energy and staying healthy, little do those owners know that they are also helping themselves. 30 minutes of walking each day can lower your blood pressure, decrease cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and boost your digestion and immune systems.
“Skin hunger” is a term used to describe a human’s need for physical touch and a pet can help to satisfy this need. Studies show that when interacting with a dog, a person’s cortisol levels go down and their levels of serotonin and dopamine increase. This reduces stress, anxiety, loneliness, and depression. Caring for a living animal that provides you unconditional love can boost your sense of self-worth by allowing you to feel needed.
When you get off work after a long day, sometimes you just want to go scratch Fido behind the ears. Now you know why you get that zen feeling when loving on your dog. Please remember that owning a pet is a lot of responsibility and not everyone is ready to make that type of commitment. If you are looking into adding a friend to your family, please your research to find the right fit for you.