NYC: Bright Lights, No People - The Move to Digital Living
Tips for New Yorkers and other city residents to move their lives digitally
New Yorkers, maybe more so than any other city in the country, are being forced to move their lives digitally. With the vast majority of the city shut down due to the pandemic, finding a new way of life in oftentimes tiny apartments (some with little to no light) is something only New Yorkers can be up for. This city is resilient and will bounce back. Here are a few tips on how to make the transition from a going-out lifestyle to staying-in a little easier.
Online Grocery Shopping and Errands
Grocery shopping and picking up other mandatory products is one of the primary reasons people leave their apartments. There are ways to do this online but it is not easy, and for some, not affordable. If it is within your budget, delivery websites such as FreshDirect, Instacart, Amazon Fresh/Whole Foods Delivery, and Peapod might be good options. Understandably, they have been inundated with orders. Be persistent though: refresh pages and check frequently. There can be some delivery availability that pop up, and this will prevent you from unnecessarily leaving your home.
If You Order Food Delivery, Make it Contactless and Tip Well
If you aren't a chef, or can't find online grocery delivery, ordering food delivery is another option. This also helps support local businesses. Even during these trying times, these people are still cooking, delivering, and maintaining store hours to support essential workers and you. They might be dealing with busy public transit hours or people on the street, so it's important to support them by tipping. Also, in many online order systems "contactless" is now an option and should be utilized to reduce person-to-person contact.
7PM: Let It All Out for Our Medical Heroes
We all need to let it out once in a while. At 7 PM nightly there is a cheer for all of our medical heroes, and in Manhattan it can be loud. Bang on your pots and pans, and express your gratitude for the people on the front lines.
Work Out Virtually
With time outside now restricted, there are so many options to work out virtually. Most NYC studios have moved classes online, many with donation options if you are financially strained. Youtube has a huge number of free videos, and even live classes, that you can partake in. Many workout apps are offering free trials during this time as well. Find what works for you, and make a little room in your apartment to stay active.
Volunteer or Donate
The list of where to volunteer and donate is huge and would not do justice trying to list them all here. The elderly and those with underlying issues however are likely to have the biggest challenges. You can first look to your own building and reach out (particularly if you have a network or message board): do you have elderly or unwell neighbors that need help? Maybe you can run a few errands for them when you do your own. Otherwise, two major nonprofit food delivery services, CityMeals on Wheels and God's Love We Deliver, have never been more important. Volunteering or donating to their services digitally will bring some light to your day.
These are extremely strenuous and emotional times. As we move our lives indoors, there are a variety of ways to stay connected online or remote. Be kind to yourself and others. New Yorkers are tough. We will adapt to a new way of life and make the most of it.