(WWJ) First of all, stay calm.
Panic feeds panic, and that emotion is the worst one to spread in times of great national stress. Stay calm, and take a breath.
Lock downs and coronavirus fears are new, but we've gone through many terrible things as a nation and rebounded.
It may not seem like it now, but this too shall pass. Lessons will be learned. Life will go on.
Coronavirus is scary because it hit out of the blue and its exact rate of infection isn't known. Bans on group gatherings are temporary and meant only to stop a massive influx of people into hospitals that don't have enough beds. Chaos would ensue from that and chaos is the enemy.
Here's what you can do:
DON'T HOARD GOODS
If you have enough toilet paper for a week or two, you have enough. Emptying the aisles causes panic.
The hoarding mentality seems to be rising out of the belief that a future lockdown will shut people out of grocery stores, but note that never happened even in China, Italy or France. Essential businesses in every single country, even in their most hard-hit days, have stayed open. Act accordingly.
President Donald Trump himself told the public grocers would remain open and the supply chain is as strong as ever. Vice President Mike Pence urged Americans to only buy the groceries they need for the week ahead. “You don’t have to buy so much,” Trump said at a news conference. “Take it easy. Just relax.”
SPEND MONEY IN PLACES YOU CARE ABOUT
Have a favorite local coffee shop, restaurant or store? If your job is stable and you're in no risk of losing your paycheck over coronavirus, keep spending money there.
Many local businesses operate on a slim margin, so losing cash flow could shut them down.
While restaurants are barred from serving in the dining room, they are doing carry out. And they need you to buy.
And when you're looking for places to spend money that don't require your presence, check out this new resource. It's links to restaurants in your area running carry out specials to bring in customers.
"We hope that in this time of crisis, this gives our communities and its local restaurants an opportunity to support and be there for one another," organizers said in a press release.
SIT YOUR ARSE AT HOME
Tuesday is St. Paddy's Day and it sucks not to drink green beer and laugh too hard with your friends. But what also sucks is seeing nurses in Italy with faces bruised from spending endless hours gowned and masked -- or seeing images like this one of hospital staff so overworked they literally pass out at their desks.
We need the center to hold, and for that we need the number of cases to be manageable. If your only contribution is staying home so there's no risk of gerting the virus and passing it on before you even realize it, then that's the best thing you can contribute.
If a visual helps, Michigan's own Kristen Bell put it this way.
CHECK ON YOUR FRIENDS
Do you know people who are quarantined alone? Too many days in isolation may sound ideal to an introvert, but it's also scary. If you have friends or relatives at home alone, call or Facetime them! We've gotten out of the habit of communication beyond texting, but this is the time to hear a human voice if there ever was one.
Don't believe every meme you see on reddit or every hysterical proclamation from your Aunt Nancy on Facebook. Hint: She has no idea what she's talking about.
The best way to stay connected is to listen to a trusted news source, and pass on the information that comes through that source. For that, there's no better source for metro Detroiters than WWJ Newsradio, Michigan's most trusted news source for 100 years. Listen on air or HERE through any digital device, Alexa, Roku or Google Home
If it sounds fake, it probably is.