Around the world and throughout California, the COVID-19 pandemic has quickly changed many people’s lives. At USE Credit Union, we know that many of our members have had to reevaluate their goals as a result of unexpected changes.
Many aspects of this situation are outside of our control, but how we respond to it is not. By setting priorities and taking practical steps to support ourselves and others during this difficult time, we’ll help ourselves get through today’s challenges and come out of this even stronger. Here’s what you can do.
1. Care for Yourself
One of the biggest challenges of being isolated at home is the stress of having your normal routine interrupted. You may also be frustrated because you can’t go to the gym, meet up with friends, or enjoy other activities that provide stress relief. But there are things you can do to deal with anxiety at home. Try these stress management techniques:
- Maintain a regular schedule.
- Get at least 8 hours of sleep each night.
- Eat a healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables and low in processed foods.
- Take daily walks around your neighborhood or check out online exercise classes.
- Call a friend or plan a video chat with family.
- Keep a journal.
- Tackle those home improvement or decluttering projects you’ve been putting off.
- Enjoy time away from screens. To get your mind off the news and stay engaged with meaningful activities, try a new hobby like knitting, gardening, baking, or playing an instrument.
2. Care for Your Career
COVID-19 has had an enormous impact on businesses of every size—and especially their employees. While many companies can keep their staff working, many others have had to furlough or lay off employees. If this happens to you, here are a few things you can do:
- Take a deep breath: We know that losing a job is stressful, no matter the circumstances, but you’ll get through this. By taking practical steps and staying persistent, you’ll find your next opportunity.
- File for unemployment benefits: Many unemployment websites are overwhelmed, so if you have trouble getting through, keep trying.
- Activate your professional and personal networks: Connecting with colleagues, friends, and family may help you identify your next professional opportunity.
- Up your skills: Whether it’s taking an online coding course or practicing your interviewing skills in front of the mirror, making yourself a more skilled prospect could help you find a new job faster.
3. Care for Your Community
This is a great way to lift your own spirits while helping others. There are plenty of ways to help your community:
- Shop local: Prioritize local businesses over national chains. Even if you can’t visit a store the way you normally would, many businesses will deliver or allow for pickup. If you don’t need anything right now, consider ordering a gift card to use later. When ordering food from local restaurants, leave a generous tip if you can.
- Help your neighbors: Offer assistance to seniors and other people in your community who cannot leave their homes because they are high risk. This may include offering to pick up groceries, help with yardwork, or even just calling to check in on them.
- Volunteer and donate: Many local nonprofits are seeing greater need for their services because of COVID-19. Healthy people can provide a huge service to their community by donating blood at their local blood bank or through an organization like the Red Cross . Or, donate your time or money to support one of California’s food banks, whose services have become increasingly essential.
4. Care for Your Money
Whether your financial situation has changed or you just want to make the best use of your stimulus check, USE Credit Union has the tools and services you need. We’ll help you:
- Bank from home: Our secure Online and Mobile Banking services make it easy to check balances, deposit checks, pay bills, and more from your phone, tablet, or computer.
- Stick to a budget: Our financial planning worksheets and our Money Management tool, available in Online and Mobile Banking, can help you create a budget and, if necessary, find ways to cut your monthly expenses.
- Pay for what you need: With low rates and no balance transfer or cash advance fees, our credit cards can help you simplify purchases while avoiding high interest rates.
- Save for the future: Our federally insured Savings accounts and Term Certificates will keep your money protected, and our competitive rates can help keep it growing.1
- Get support: Contact our Member Service Team anytime, day or night, for answers to questions about your USECU accounts and to discuss new financial needs.
Mobile and data rates apply when using Mobile Banking. Restrictions apply.
1. Must meet membership criteria.