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How to learn and grow during corona

As all the events we look forward to each spring get canceled, we have to look inward and be creative about how we will spend the next couple of months surviving COVID-19. This week, News Editor Jessi Stone shares with readers her top 5 distractions while social distancing.

  1. When life gets out of whack and out of my control, it's very important for me to keep a routine and focus on managing my mind so I don't end up in a dark hole with my emotions. I do this by starting my morning with meditation and a quick yoga practice. Waynesville Yoga Center in Waynesville is offering livestream classes - sign up here
  2. On my lunch breaks during the day while working from home, I like to walk my dogs a couple of miles around the neighborhood and listen to my favorite audiobooks or podcasts. Not only do the pups and I get our steps in for the day and get some fresh air, but I am usually listening to some self-improvement book or a podcast telling me how to remain calm during this pandemic. For women who need some inspiration, I highly recommend Dr. Brene Brown's new podcast Unlocking Us and Glennon Doyle's new book "Untamed." For the guys, I recommend The Brendon Show podcast and Gary John Bishop's bestseller "Unfu*k Yourself." All are life changing. 
  3. One positive in this mess is that many businesses and universities are offering free online learning opportunities. I signed up for a free course offered at Yale University. It's called the Science of Well-being and is apparently the university's most popular class. I know we could all use a lesson on how to be happier right now - sign up here
  4. This has been a highly debated topic lately — whether or not we can go hiking. You can definitely go hiking, but finding a less popular trail is the goal so you can keep your distance from others. I usually have a couple of good hiking buddies to go with me, but for the next few weeks I'm looking forward to some solo treks. 
  5. Lastly, my husband and I will be replacing our date nights out on the town with dates in the kitchen. We love trying to new recipes. Check out Smoky Mountain Living for plenty of food options.
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