Strategies to stay strong, remain active and keep well during the COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19 has affected all of us – it has caused much stress, many hardships and lifestyle adjustments. However, we are resilient and need to stay hopeful that there will be many silver linings that come from this pandemic. Please check out the strategies and resources below to help keep you and your family active, healthy and safe through this pandemic.

For the most up-to-date information regarding the coronavirus pandemic, visit your state's Department of Health or visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For the Ohio State community, visit the Wexner Medical Center.

For more coping resources and tips for minimizing stress and anxiety, please check out our wellness programming, tips and resources page.

Best wishes and stay well!

Bernadette Mazurek Melnyk, PhD, APRN-CNP, EBP-C, FAANP, FNAP, FAAN
Vice President for Health Promotion, University Chief Wellness Officer
Dean and Professor, College of Nursing
Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry, College of Medicine
Executive Director, Helene Fuld Health Trust National Institute for Evidence-based Practice in Nursing and Healthcare
The Ohio State University

Not only are you working from home, but you might be hosting a full suite bed & breakfast (...and lunch, dinner, and all the snacks!) Here are some ideas to keep you inspired and help you use what you have on hand.

Taking time each day to practice self-care, through mindfulness and other strategies, is vital during these times. If you are not sure where to start, and need tools, tips and accountability, check out these resources and strategies below:

Mobile Apps:

We need each other to get through this time! Remember, it’s about “Physical” Distancing, so let’s be creative with ways to stay social and connected. Sign up for a free personal Zoom account. Use it to host up to 100 people for 40-minute meetings, social gatherings or happy hours. Use video conferencing to bring your network together!

Additional ideas:

  • Set up a virtual playdate for your child and their school friend so that they can color or read stories together.
  • Host a book club or study with your friends, club or faith community.
  • Share your expertise: host a live virtual-workout, cooking class, read a book or show how to make a craft.
  • Use additional apps to play games together e.g. Host a euchre night with three other friends, play scrabble-like games or others.
  • Set up an 8 p.m. hangout every night with your mom and dad or friends to decompress and make sure everyone is ok!
  • Connect with your neighborhood through Nextdoor.
  • Strategies for coping with loneliness

Whether you have bored kids at home, or you’ve read every book you have on hand – here are some ideas to keep you and your family distracted, entertained in between work, school and everything else you are balancing. As a reminder, don’t feel bad about sticking to a schedule. Feel free to use these ideas that are also educational!

Go on a virtual field trip:

Art Lessons:



  • Scholastics – free resources for kids to keep learning at home
  • Action for Healthy Kids: Free online resources for exploratory learning and transitioning to online learning.
  • Check out an eBook, eAudiobook, movies and more through the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s digital library.
  • Use the Caribu app to connect children with their grandparents, friends or other family members and color, read books and play games together while video chatting.
  • Teach your children to type


Now more than ever, we need to stay active to keep our bodies healthy, manage stress and provide an outlet for our nervous energy. You don’t need to order expensive equipment and set up a home gym – use these free resources and ideas:

Whether you are a supervisor at Ohio State, senior leader or have leadership position in your volunteer organizations – these are tips and resources for you:

Nothing helps coping with stress better than the feeling of helping others. You may be isolated – but you can still live generously and help others in need. Here are a few ideas:

  • Support the Wexner Medical Center faculty and staff on the frontlines: Email with your encouraging words, pictures and videos to support our frontline healthcare workers.
  • Donate Supplies: the Wexner Medical Center is humbled and honored by the generosity of our community and the desire to donate new, unopened medical supplies. The donation center is now closed, and if shortages arise, we may reopen the center. However, there are other groups that would benefit from your generosity. 
  • LifeCare Alliance is in need of healthy adult volunteers to deliver meals to our vulnerable Central Ohio community
  • Donate items or your time to Ohio Food Banks or the Buckeye Food Alliance (student pantry) as they see a surge in a demand.
  • It’s a great time to go through clothes and other items to find items to donate! Donate your business attire to Dress for Success.
  • Visit to find additional ways to help Central Ohio.
  • Visit the American Red Cross and donate blood if you can.
  • Visit the United Way of Central Ohio to learn more ways to give.
  • Ohio State students can visit iGrad for answers, tips and advice for staying financially well during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Ohio State faculty and staff can use the Your Plan For Health Financial Fitness resources.
  • Huntington has free financial education resources for all stages of financial wellness.
  • 7 Things to Do in Hard Times - download
  • The importance of getting on a budget right now - download 
  • Protecting your Four Walls - download
  • Coronavirus & Investing - What you need to know - download 

Ohio State Faculty and Staff

For additional resources available to all benefits-eligible faculty and staff through Ohio State's Employee Assistance Program, please visit our website.