We’re into a second nationwide lockdown for 42 days in Uganda. The government has enacted stringent measures to control the increasing number of infected coronavirus cases. As a result, we cannot operate our businesses, work, or engage in any social activities. In other words, we must stay at home for 42 days. But what are you doing as coronavirus lockdown survival activities?
Do you wake up every day and see yourself doing nothing? Are you waiting for the lockdown to end, and you go back to your business or job? Well, that’s not bad. However, you need to anticipate change and prepare yourself early enough to adjust to it. In other words, this time around, think about how you will adapt to that change.
During the first lockdown, which started in March 2020, I came up with an article on Covid-19. In this article, I wrote about the lessons learned from Covid-19. I asked my readers this question, “What has the pandemic taught you?“. If you didn’t read that blog post, let me request you to read it first. It will enable you to reflect on the points that I’m about to share with you.
In that article, I anticipated changes like the loss of jobs, the collapse of businesses, and our lifestyle changes. Indeed, these three changes have occurred and are continuing to happen now and again. Therefore, it’s high time you thought about engaging yourself in some Covid-19 lockdown survival activities.
How Do You Engage Yourself in Coronavirus Lockdown Survival Activities?
While it’s true that we’re going through stressful moments because of what’s happening, you shouldn’t give up. Don’t despair because life has to continue for those who will survive the pandemic. But if you’re to survive the lockdown happily, you need to plan. How are you planning your daily life throughout the days of the lockdown? What about your family?
Unfortunately, most people don’t have a daily plan for themselves and their families. As a result, they get into the temptation of spending their time watching TVs or moving around aimlessly in disguise of taking a walk. If that’s what you’re experiencing, take a breath. Stop worrying about what’s happening and start thinking about how you’ll engage yourself in meaningful activities. In this post, I am referring to them as “coronavirus lockdown survival activities“.
Remember that you can no longer operate your business to earn money. And most importantly, you have to live. That scenario puts you in a dilemma. To make matters worse, you don’t envisage anything else you can do to continue surviving. All you know is waking up in the morning to go to your job or run your business. If you find yourself in such a situation, you’re no different from me during the first lockdown.
What Do You Have to Do Then?
Take a breath. In life, I have come across many useful people. While in northern Uganda, I met a Catholic priest who became a friend. He taught me behaviour that has, since then, helped me to overcome challenges. This behaviour is embedded in the word: MEDITATION.
The priest taught me that once in a while, you should take time off, sit or lie comfortably and close your eyes to focus your attention on your breath and body movement with each inhalation and exhalation. Do that for some time and then shift your attention to focus on any essential issue in your life. Great! I learnt it, and I do it quite often. It helps me to get good ideas for the betterment of my life.
Similarly, what you need to do is to learn to take a breath. Begin by meditating on what coronavirus lockdown survival activities you can do to change your life.
What Coronavirus Lockdown Survival Activities Can You Do?
As you consider getting into meditation, let me share with you my experience. Hopefully, it will kick-start your thinking.
When I meditated on what survival activity I could do during the first coronavirus lockdown, gardening came to my mind. Why gardening? The following were the reasons:
First, I wanted to keep ourselves in the family busy with some meaningful activities. Maintaining ourselves routinely active became a remedy to our mental health. Consequently, we stopped feeling anxious about staying at home.
Secondly, I wanted to grow vegetables to supplement our diet. As you know, food was a problem for most families during the lockdown. Having a well-balanced diet became so essential in boosting our immunity to fight against Covid-19.
Thirdly, I wanted to reduce the recurrent expenditure on certain foodstuffs. We already had a small banana plantation with about 15 banana trees. Fortunately, it saved us from buying bananas during the lockdown. Therefore, gardening helped us eventually to save some money for other developments.
Last but not least, I wanted to venture into farming as another source of income. Relying entirely on business income had become tricky and challenging.
Owing to the above reasons, we started a small garden in our backyard. We opted to grow tomatoes, leafy onions, kale, purple cabbages, eggplants, and passion fruits. The daily garden activities provided us with enough tasks to occupy us during the lockdown. Besides, we learnt several useful skills.
Benefits of Starting a Garden at Home
Gardening offers several benefits. Indeed, we have greatly benefited, and we’re yet to see more results. For instance, our backyard garden has helped us to deal with anxiety and depression in the lockdown.
Secondly, it has helped us to maintain good physical health. Since it involves strenuous physical activities like digging and weeding, it has helped me, particularly, to keep myself fit and lose weight. As a result, it’s a remedy for fighting against developing high blood pressure.
Thirdly, it has taught us in the family essential life values like patience and passion. Plants don’t grow overnight. And since they take time, we’ve indirectly learned to be patient. We also developed a passion for it as it offered us a feeling of achievement.
Fourthly, it has acted as a good source of vitamin D and healthy vegetables. As we expose ourselves to sunshine, our bodies produce vitamin D. And by growing our own vegetables, we now eat them regularly. As a result, we’re on the right track to building a strong immune system.
Since there are many benefits, and I cannot exhaust them all, let me now draw your attention to particularly three of them.
- Developing a passion for gardening.
- Acquiring helpful gardening skills.
- Starting an avocado growing project.
Developing a Passion for Gardening
Developing a passion for gardening takes time, indeed. I grew up in a rural setting where digging was part of our life to get food. But the traditional way of doing it made me hate it right from childhood. It’s one of the reasons why I concentrated on my studies to get a white-collar job.
After so many years, I have developed a passion for it. And interestingly, after getting faced with the challenge of doing nothing at home in the lockdown.
I set up our garden strategically in the backyard. The sitting arrangement in my house is in such a way that I look directly into it. Furthermore, when I wake up in the morning, I look at the garden plants first. Even when I return home from work after a long business day, I go to my garden first. It has made me enjoy staying at home more than before. In other words, I am addicted to it. I monitor what goes on it from time to time. Without any doubt, I have developed a burning passion for gardening. And as you know, passion is the secret behind any successful business.
Acquiring Helpful Gardening Skills
In the course of maintaining my small garden, I have had challenges. For instance, challenges of drought, pests, fungal diseases and plants failing to bear fruits. If you’re not determined, such problems can easily make you despair.
Thankfully, we didn’t lose hope. Instead, we did some research on how to get over them. For sure, it helped us greatly. And I would like to share with you these essential gardening skills you must acquire to succeed in gardening.
1. Making organic fertilisers and compost.
2. Managing pests and diseases without using artificial insecticides and pesticides.
3. Exposing your plants to sunlight for better yields.
4. Building raised garden beds.
5. Making a DIY (Do it yourself) soil analysis.
6. Tricks of how to install a DIY pocket-friendly drip irrigation system.
7. Lastly, but most importantly, pollination. Knowing the importance of pollinators (e.g. bees) and how to hand-pollinate flowers. For instance, my garden is in a location without pollinators. So, hand pollination is an activity I perform daily on passion fruit flowers. And the yield is astonishing.
If you want more information on the above skills, contact me because I have hands-on experience. Alternatively, you can also do your own research to learn.
Starting an Avocado Orchard
With the skills I acquired and the passion I developed for gardening, I became enthusiastic about venturing into agribusiness to make money. As a professional teacher turned into a business-oriented person, I always look for business opportunities.
The small backyard garden acted as a catalyst to venturing into a bigger project: the avocado growing project. We have 8 acres of land. Initially, we had eucalyptus trees on it. But having evaluated the return on investment, we noticed that they were not so profitable. So we decided to remove eucalyptus trees and replace them with Hass avocado trees. So far, we have planted 150 trees, and our target is to have over 1,000 avocado trees. It’s, therefore, a somehow big project that requires reasonable financial resources, care and patience.
We are into a Covid-19 lockdown again. We don’t know whether it will end after 42 days. Even if it does, it’s possible to have another round of lockdown. Don’t despair. Get prepared right now by thinking about survival activities you can do in the coronavirus lockdown. If you have some space in your residence, try gardening.
Start it on a small scale so that you can acquire some skills. When you finally learn the basics, you can venture into agribusiness to make money.
Has this post helped you to learn something?