Social Distancing Got You Down? Use Your Library's Online Resources to Stay Connected

A laptop rests against some books at a library.
Stay connected and up-to-date during the coronavirus pandemic by using the Hennepin County Library website.

As many of us who don’t normally work from home (and even those who do) start another week of social distancing and less freedom to move about, I am mindful of the need to take some time to develop a healthy routine that can look and feel very different from my normal schedule.

For me, using the internet to develop my professional skills and remain connected to my coworkers has been a good start. Along with email, I am using the online resources provided to our patrons and accessible on the webpage under the browse button.

These online resources enable users to feel connected and access up-to-date health and wellness information, online educational databases, consumer information, eBooks and genealogy resources—to name only a few. Access them by logging into your account with your library barcode and four-digit PIN. No library card? Check the Hennepin County Library website for more ways that the library is temporarily providing access.

I also know I need to move away from the computer and focus on my physical well-being. Here’s a simple challenge, which was sent by my fitness group as a way to exercise and check in with others.

CrossCut Barbell Women 60+ 30 Day Challenge!

Pick an exercise. Make it something you can do from home. A few examples, sit-ups, air squats or pushups. Today, do one repetition; tomorrow, do two and the next day, three. Got it?  Then if you miss a day, let's say you miss Wednesday, on Thursday you have to do your Wednesday count plus your Thursday count. Then post or message everyone in your group to let us know you've done it. It'll motivate or inspire the rest of us into getting it done.

I will say, my workouts are increasing in length, the posts and comments have been encouraging and funny, and the challenge has become a fresh break. My challenge to you: use to satisfy your curiosity and expand your knowledge, keep in touch with coworkers, and consider initiating an exercise challenge. Invite friends and family, and simply keep moving.

Liz Menigo is an associate librarian for Hennepin County Library–Maple Grove and Osseo.