With COVID-19 attaining pandemic status, stricter measures have been increasingly implemented by world leaders to slow down infection rates and keep populations safe.
Singapore is no different, with safe distancing measures and requirements to allow employees to work from home if they can with potential amendments to law.
Many employees are thus finding themselves confronting a new normalcy in their career – having to deliver their work from home. While this will definitely aid in the fight against the spread of COVID-19 in Singapore, many employees may also find it a challenge to remain productive and focus on just work when they are home.
In addition, with the imbalance of spending time outdoors and indoors, you can also become weary of the isolation, needing to access goods and service you typically have access to, as well as finding stimulating activities when you get bored at home.
Yes, you may watch television and subscribe to Netflix, learn to cook a new dish, complete household errands you've put off for months, but is that it? Here are a few things that you can do from the comfort of your own home that you may have thought you could only do by being out and about.
1. Borrow a library book
The Singapore government constantly encourages lifelong learning, and one way you can do so is by reading more and absorbing information that is readily available in books, e-books and audio books.
While libraries across the island may be closed between 7 April and 4 May 2020 as part of circuit breaker measures, you can still access extensive titles through the NLB Mobile app.
The National Library Board (NLB) has made it so much easier for readers of diverse genres to borrow an e-book or audio book wherever you may be. The app is free and what is also great is that you don't have to lug around 300-page tomes.
As an added bonus, by reading from home, you can also introduce your young kids to the joy of reading.
2. Engage in a high-intensity workout
Naturally, you will find yourself being home a lot more often during work hours, taking meetings, eating meals, over the weekend and even when you're engaging in leisure activities. This can lead to a sedentary lifestyle which, in turn, can lead to health complications.
This is why you should purposefully inject some heart-pumping exercise to your routine. One of the best ways you can get yourself moving, and shed those extra pounds, is through a HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) session. These are typically short bursts of intense exercises that are followed up with low-intensity recovery periods. For example, work out for 30 seconds, and then rest for the next 30 seconds – for an entire session of about 28 minutes.
HIIT workouts are intense, but they are also quick and effective. You don't need the gym for this, just some space to move in your living room or bedroom will do the trick. If you're unsure what sort of HIIT exercises you can start with, some common ones are push-ups, burpees, mountain climbers, and jump squats.
You can stay equally trim and fit from the convenience of your own home. AIA Vitality has launched a series of weekly live webinars for AIA Vitality members to participate in where those who registered and completed the sessions earn 50 AIA Vitality points – supporting you on your AIA Vitality health and wellness journey!
3. Go back to school
Another new norm reality you have to brace for is potentially losing your job, as your company seeks to reduce cost or even goes belly up. Upskilling and upgrading your qualifications can set you up for another role or help you better integrate into a new workplace when the economy recovers.
While online academies have been around for some time, a preference for face-to-face training and the traditional academic path has meant that online options were viewed as complementary resources or even frowned upon as sub-optimal. However, change is in the air. Now that school-going children are required to practice home-based learning, extra tuition is required to be conducted online, the demand for remote learning has skyrocketed.
There's no reason why you should not jump on the #EmbracingNewNorms bandwagon to progress your education and upskill online through a credible instructor in the comfort of your own home.
Aside from online academies like Udemy that offer a range of short courses, you also have websites like Coursera that offer longer courses by different educational institutions across the globe. If you're looking for something more prestigious, Harvard University is also offering free courses in different subject areas.
The Singapore government has also committed to a further $500 SkillsFuture top-up for Singapore workers to use on courses offered by the Institutes of Higher Learning and NTUC LearningHub.
4. Assess your health
Health is wealth – you've heard this adage in one form or another before. What better way to address your health concerns by actually knowing where you stand in terms of your health.
With AIA Vitality, you can find out more about your health, learn ways you can improve it and even get rewarded for achieving health goals – and you can do all this without leaving your safe space.
You can take online health assessments, to find out "How Healthy Are You?", "How Stressed Are You?", "How Well Are You Eating?", "How Active Are You?" and "How Well Are You Sleeping?". With your results, you can then arrange for health screenings, dental assessments, nutritional and fitness assessments and vaccinations.
5. See a doctor if you're unwell
It takes a certain amount of resilience to distance yourself from social activities, but it's also important for you to make sure you get checked if you're feeling unwell.
In times like this, you will be glad that technological advancements allows for a doctor's consultation and receiving of medication without requiring you to leave your home. Thanks to WhiteCoat, a Singapore-based healthcare provider that offers on-demand telemedicine services through an app, you can get on-demand video consultation with a Singapore-registered doctor, who will then prescribe the necessary medicine and arrange for its delivery to your doorstep.
AIA is also remains committed to supporting you during this challenging time. We have pro-actively implemented initiatives which we hope will be helpful including covering the cost of 50,000 video consultations provided by WhiteCoat, an on-demand tele-medicine provider, for policyholders of AIA HealthShield Gold Max, a MediSave-approved Integrated Shield Plan.
For those diagnosed with a serious medical condition, AIA has also partnered with Medix to offer exclusive assess to personal medical case management service by leading specialists. This enables customers to better understand and manage medical conditions, while being supported 24/7 from diagnoses, treatment, to recovery.
If you require a specialist, you can also arrange for an appointment with over 200 specialists across 26 medical disciplines via AIA Quality Healthcare Partners (AQHP) within three working days and enjoy special consultation rates.