Recently I found myself in a dilemma. I had no choice but to go to the grocery store. Trust me when I say, I searched every grocery delivery app, drive-thru and curb-side option before ultimately making the decision to saddle up and go in to the store. Here are a few ways I did my best to social distance in a semi-social setting.
Going out for anything can produce anxiety in even the calmest individual. Our bodies can respond to stress in adverse ways. Therefore, find something that is calming for you to do before and after you leave the store. This can be listening to your favorite song or a breathing exercise. Sounds drastic, but it’s better to know beforehand how to calm your nerves just in case. I prefer to chat with a family member or friend.
Make a list of what you need. Not a mental note, but a real list either written or on your phone. I suggest a written note because it can be tossed after the shopping trip, and you don’t have to worry about constantly touching your phone. Also, Check the store’s inventory before you go. Many stores have low inventory, therefore, by checking the site you will have an idea if that store is worth the run.
Equip yourself with your own sanitation protection. Here’s a quick video on how to make a homemade mask: https://youtu.be/mai-UqdNRi8. Also, some store have sanitizer and wipes, but it’s a good idea to have your own just in case. Whip the cart’s handle any other parts you may touch during your visit. Properly dispose your protective gear in the trash and whatever you do, DO NOT TOUCH YOUR FACE until you have thoroughly washed your hands for at least 20 seconds.
4. Personal Space
If you must go in public, the CDC has suggested to stay at least 6 ft from other individuals. I’ve observed people congregating in front of displays, shelves and coolers in close proximity. I suggest waiting at a distance. Give the person browsing space and time to select the item(s) they need, then you take yours turn. There are many stores with markers on the floor to keep individuals apart during the check-out process, but keep the 6 ft suggestion in mind as a rule of thumb throughout your shopping trip.
5. Keep it Clean
White House coronavirus task force member and Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci highlighted everyone doesn’t need to “get completely obsessed about packages that come in.” “Those types of surfaces, the virus might live there for a very short time. I wouldn’t worry about that. It’s more [about] the close things, the hand washing,” he stated. However, if it makes you feel better to sanitize your groceries do so with care, ingesting harmful chemicals is also hazardous. Be sure to wash your hands after handling groceries and before and after preparing meals.
Staying healthy is our number one goal as a community. For the more information on COVID-19 check the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) here: