Categories
COVID-19 Family

Working, Teaching, & Parenting…Oh My!

With Gwinnett’s decision to have digital learning for a season, many parents are continuing to face the challenge of working and teaching. Many of you already balance working from our space and from home, but now there’s another factor to think about. Although we don’t have the answers, we found a source to answer some of your questions or to help put you a little more at ease! Read the article below to join the back-to-school conversation.

“4 Things Parents Can Expect from Their Kids When They Go Back to School” | Maressa Brown, Aug. 2020

 

Categories
Business

Balancing Life & Working Remote

Articles on work-life balance may seem like white noise to most at this point, but it’s important not to lose focus! As I was sitting at home yesterday, I noticed a couple of trends: 1) I was putting fewer tasks on my to-do list and 2) it was taking longer to accomplish each one. My time in the office was easily becoming the most productive time of my week. If you’re finding this to be your case and habits while at home, then check out the article below. It reiterates many of the tips we’ve heard before with a refreshing perspective.

“3 Tips on Resiliency to Help You Avoid Remote-Work Burnout” | Alain Hunkins, May 21, 2020

 

 

Categories
Event

Quarantine Cocktails + Mocktails

Okay, it’s about time quarantine moves on out of the way; but since that is not happening, it’s time to make it fun! A few weeks ago, we had a little virtual Happy Hour to see how you were all doing! We encouraged you to BYOB (bring your own beverage), but we decided that’s not good enough. So here is a list of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages for you to make at home! Feel free to bring these to our Zoom calls or just enjoy them alone, in the dark, with a good Netflix movie–we’re here for you, not to judge you.

Iced Coffee:

  • This version includes Bailey’s, so it’s probably not the smartest way to start your day. Nonetheless, it’s a sweet treat when you need a little caffeine boost!
  • – There are a few ways to make coffee with this recipe so you can make it your own!

Peach Bellini:

  • – Nothing says getting ready for summer in Georgia like peaches. Enjoy a Peach Bellini while you work those long days from home!
  • – If you’re wanting the taste of this summer drink but still have a Zoom call to hop on, then try this version!

Raspberry Lemonade:

  • – You cannot get ready to kick summer off without a nice glass of lemonade. This Raspberry Vodka Lemonade is perfect to pair with a weekend outside or an afternoon snack.
  • – Some days you really want to share homemade lemonade with your family, so here’s the perfect recipe. And if you haven’t made this homemade before, we highly recommend it. 

 

Categories
COVID-19

What COVID-19 has Taught me so far

Written by Samantha Proctor

It’s day 62,843 of quarantine, right?  I’d be lying if I said I haven’t worn the same outfit for 3 days in a row…oops.  Most days I can’t even remember if it’s Tuesday or Friday, or if I’ve eaten anything today. What I do know is that this pandemic is something that our generation, heck, even the generation before us, has never seen. I don’t know how to navigate this, and going to my parents for advice is useless. For me, this has been a period where I am in uncharted territory. We are having to figure this out alone. Luckily, we’re 3 weeks in and some very valuable life lessons have been learned! These made a huge impact on my family so far,  and I pray they help you as well! 

 

Family comes first

I am so lucky to work for a company that has always instilled this in their employees. I do have workaholic tendencies, but being a 39 week expectant mom has really made this sink in. At the end of the day, I have to do what’s best for my husband, my unborn son, and myself. The thought of going anywhere that I could bring germs into my house is a scary thought. I am learning each day that regardless of what is going on outside of my house, it isn’t near as important as what is happening and who is inside my house. 

 

Even if you feel alone, you’re not

This time of ‘quarantine’ or isolation, whatever you want to call it, is sad. Especially when your spouse is an ‘essential’ worker, and you find yourself spending all of your time at home alone. The feelings of loneliness tend to creep in during this time. I had to remind myself, and still have to, that this is temporary. Quarantine will not last forever. I am not alone, because hundreds of thousands of people all over Georgia are in the same boat. If they can do it, we can too. Just because you’re alone, doesn’t mean you have to be lonely. 

 

Control what you can

This kinda brings me back to the ‘family comes first’ point. I have learned that I can control what happens in my house, and for the most part, control what my family does. What I can’t control is how the media thrives on our fear and anxiety, and I can’t control how irresponsible other people are. What I can control is how much attention I give the media and I can control my decisions to stay as sanitary as possible. This situation that we’re stuck in has really forced me to let go of the reigns.

 

Let go and let God

A huge part of letting go of control is letting God have it. My faith has really been tested during this pandemic. Jeremiah 29:11 has been playing in my mind for the past 62,843 days (okay, I’m being dramatic, more like 20!): “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  God has us in His hands. He knows how this will all play out, and I have to put my trust in that–even when I don’t want to. Even when I am feeling alone, sad, and like the world is crashing down around me, God has my back (and yours!). 

Moral of the story is we are going to be okay. Our anxieties may be high, we may be seeing business repercussions of this global pandemic, we may be feeling alone and depressed, but write this down: “If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.” Read it, write it down, say it aloud. Make it your mantra for this time–and really for every day. We’ve got this, friends! There is a light at the end of the tunnel! 

Categories
COVID-19

Coming Together at a Distance

It is no secret that Covid-19 is affecting everyone, in many different ways. Everything is slower if it hasn’t already come to a screeching halt. We are all a little stressed, worried, and anxious about what the next few weeks will hold–not to mention how this will play a part in our economy and lives for the years to come. We are all living through something right now that no one alive has ever witnessed before.

For the most part, this pandemic is out of our control. However there are a few things that are in our control that could help in doing our part.

  • – Help others, without contact. This one is as helpful for you as it is for someone else. When you get lost in thought and start to let the fear and uncertainty sink in…distract yourself. Instead of asking yourself a million questions that you don’t have the answer to, ask yourself, “how can I help someone else today?” We have seen this done in so many ways but for 
    • > Listen to the recommended protocols – the best way we can do our part is to stop the chain. We could prevent the spread to our family friends, and anyone else we come in contact with by simply not coming in contact. If everyone would take the initiative to practice social distancing and maintaining a sanitized environment, everything would slow down or come to the end much quicker.
    • > Helping others could be something as simple as dropping off a gallon of milk or pack of toilet paper on the front porch. Next time you place a grocery order, reach out to a neighbor or something that can’t leave the house and see if you can pick up an item or two for them.
    • >Helping others right now also goes farther than tangible goods. Social distancing has taken a toll on people emotionally. Simply reaching out to someone who has been isolated could change their whole day. Give them a call, FaceTime them so they can see your face and you can see theirs. Make plans for something you can do together when this is all over.
    • > My daughter’s preschool is “adopting the elderly.” I love this idea. They have a list of senior citizens in the community that will not have face to face interactions with others. So to do something small to brighten their day, and keep the little ones entertained for a short period of time, they have decided to have the students color pictures, write letters and do something simple to bring a smile to their face.

 

During these times, helping others looks different than it ever has. But there is nothing more encouraging than seeing a world in panic and finding the few that calm the storm with kindness. Always look to see the good, and work hard to be the good. How we respond, how we come together during a crisis, will define our outcome.

 

Categories
COVID-19

Navigating Business in an Uncertain Time

As business leaders, we have the opportunity to influence not only people inside of our organizations, but also those around us every day. To do this, we have to understand how the role of leadership plays in this current climate as well as in our personal lives and habits.

Lead Our Companies & Community

We need calmness, not craziness. Don’t lean into the panic of the media; instead, work as a reliable and peaceful source for your team. 

  • – Good leaders act like leaders.
    • > Know your strengths and weaknesses
    • > Focus on making others successful
    • > Seek help from others
    • > Tell it like it is: as leaders, especially during this time, we need to be honest with ourselves and our teams.

Keep Clients in Mind

Clients need reassurance that you’re keeping them as a priority. To make sure you’re doing everything you can, here are a few questions to ask:

  • – What can I offer my clients that would help them generate revenue fast?
  • – What can I offer that would help them save money on marketing, sales, or operations? (think automation, online ordering, online forms, funnels, etc.)
  • – Is there something I can do for my clients that if sold as a stand-alone service, it would be valuable to others in the market? 

Another helpful and intentional way to let them know you’re thinking about their wellbeing is to send individual, personal, thoughtful emails to every client. Ask how they’re doing and if there’s anything you can do right now to support them.

Balance Work & Life

The best way to maintain balance is keeping a clear mind. We talk a lot about work/life balance, especially when working from home or a coworking space, but it is especially important right now. When there are no coworking spaces to turn to and you’re stuck at home, make sure to care for your routine.

  • Practice self care. Prepare for your day as normal. Get dressed and work from an area that is quiet and allows you to focus like you would at your normal workspace.
  • Create a routine, not a schedule. A schedule is a set of blocked times to do a certain task. If you weren’t doing this before, then it will most likely not be helpful right now. Instead of listing out your schedule of when you’re working, create a routine. Routines are habits that you create and set in motion. These will help your mind adjust and be more effective. 
  • Lean in to the positive and be intentional with the time we have with families. Although this season is unexpected and far from ideal, don’t let this time slip by. Enjoy the extra time with your family and focus on growing relationships and creating memories. This will always be a time to look back on cherish–even if it doesn’t feel like it right now. Here are some ideas to help keep the family entertained if you run out of activities!

Additional Resources

 

Categories
COVID-19

Helpful Widgets to Keep You Focused at Home

So the madness has officially set in. Personally, this means everyone rushes to the store to get the essentials: toilet paper, bread, milk, coffee, wine, and (if you are anything like me) ice cream. However, as an employee that is preparing work from home, your essentials may look a little different. Of course you need the same basics to stay alive and sane in your house but what tools do you need to remain successful working from home?

Well, after a little time at home, I have found a few resources to help save us, keep us sane, and manage our time wisely. When you are at work, you probably make a point to take a lunch break and step outside of the office for a moment to refresh yourself. Maybe you enjoy walks after you accomplish a daunting task on your list. But at home you may find it harder to keep track of time, mark off your to-do list, and make sure your meetings are on schedule and efficient, Hopefully theses little tools will help you manage your time wisely while also taking care of yourself:

  • Break Timer is a Chrome extension that reminds you to step away from your computer to give your eyes and brain a break. 
  • Toggl is another Chrome extension to help keep track of your time and what you are allocating it towards. This will help with time management and help you track where your time is going!
  • – Video calls are a great way to communicate with teammates and/or clients during this time. It keeps your meetings personal, productive, and efficient. A video platform we recommend is Google Meet. This platform is user friendly and easily compatible with all other google apps we love. 
  • – If you are anything like me, there is nothing more satisfying than making a task list and checking each item off. But sometimes, your physical checklist can’t follow you everywhere. Here are some virtual checklist and task management recommendations:
    • > Tasks is a google chrome add on that you can have pulled up next to your email and google calendar. This is also available as a mobile app to access anywhere.
    • > Trello is a great platform for managing tasks, adding checklists within the task, setting reminders, and collaborating with a team. 

 

Everything works differently for each person, but these are some great resources and surely one of them will prove useful to your everyday routine

 

Categories
COVID-19

The Good in Gwinnett

In times of unforeseen events, communities–like the one in Gwinnett–show support and care in ways we forget is possible. Right now students are navigating online school, local businesses are rolling with the punches, and parents are taking on a new role as teacher. These shifts in our everyday lives mean a lot of our normal securities are uncertain. With Gwinnett having one of the highest populations of food insecurity, many students are having to turn elsewhere for a normal meal promised at school. Incomes are taking a hit as hours are cut or jobs are completely lost. Luckily, our community is filled with people who are prepared to give back. Here is a list of places to go to if you are interested in helping out or are in need of resources.

Gwinnett County Public Schools

68 schools in the county are offering meals to students 18 and younger from 11am to 1pm. School buses are also delivering meals to certain areas, like: “Berkmar, Central Gwinnett, Discovery, Meadowcreek, Norcross, Shiloh, and South Gwinnett– and for the following schools– Alcova ES, Arcado ES, Berkeley Lake ES, Chesney ES, Duluth MS, Harris ES, Jackson ES, Knight ES, Lovin ES, McKendree ES, Northbrook MS, and Sycamore ES. The buses will be making stops at their regular bus stops between 11 a.m. and noon” (WSBTV). Check out this great article from WSBTV that breaks down resources for each county!

Local Cooperatives

In an effort to continue helping those in need while maintaining the safety of our community, local cooperatives are going the extra mile. North Gwinnett, Lawrenceville, and Southeast Gwinnett co-ops have released their response to COVID-19 while also listing their most needed supplies. Food items–like tuna, boxed meals, and soups are among the most needed. Personal items–like laundry detergent, soap, toilet paper, and toothpaste are also needed.

Categories
Family

Social Distancing but Make it Fun

2020 has been what we all expected. With the devastating fires in Australia, the tornado that destroyed Nashville, and now COVID-19 crippling most of the world. It feels like we can’t catch a break. At a time where we all need to feel a sense of community and support, we are being told to stay home and distance ourselves from others. While this is what the CDC recommends (and is absolutely for the best), it isn’t easy. It’s been less than a week, the stir-crazy is sinking in, and the wilder the kids get the quicker your patience runs out! Before you absolutely lose your mind and lock the kids in the backyard, check out a few of these fun things our team has been implementing in our homes. We hope they are helpful to you as well! 

  • – Connect with nature: Now that it’s finally stopped raining, take advantage of feeling the sunshine on your face! And just because you’re social distancing from other humans, doesn’t mean that you can’t go outside. Go for a walk around the neighborhood with the kids and dogs, break out the soccer ball and run around the backyard, even just take a drive with the windows down. Vitamin D will do you some good! 
  • – Add some fun to your todo list: We are all working from home, but honestly, many of us have pretty empty todo lists. Now is your time to try something you’ve always wanted! Whether that is teaching your kids how to do the cupid shuffle, or working on that puzzle that’s been sitting halfway finished for 3 months, make sure you add some fun to your day. Laughter and joy is what’s holding most of us together when it feels like everything else is falling apart around us! 
  • – Dance the blues away: Like I mentioned earlier, teaching the kids the cupid shuffle is a fun way to break the day up, but also you have to get up and move too! One of my favorite Instagram families ‘The Boss Family’ (Stephen is the DJ on Ellen Degeneres talk show) are live streaming dance workouts throughout the day to get you moving, get the blood flowing, and bring some smiles into your day! You can check them out by searching for @Allisonholker or @sir_twitch_alot
  • – Be Productive: This might not bring a whole lot of fun in the moment, but once it’s done you’re going to be so relieved! How often do you get 2 weeks at home without having a sick kid or having to use PTO? Use this time to tackle the coat closet that’s been collecting junk for the past 2 years or finally do the kid-friendly scie! You have extra time, don’t let it go to waste by binge watching Friends for the 24th time (we are NOT judging you for this!!). Use this time wisely, don’t take it for granted! 

 

We’re here for you during this time–whether it’s to video chat so you can have ‘adult conversation’ or if it’s to give you some ideas to help break the day up. Just know, The Cornerstone Team has your back! We look forward to seeing you all back at Cornerstone in a few weeks once the Coronavirus has run its course and our community is back on its feet! Stay safe, clean & healthy, Coworkers!

Categories
Updates

COVID-19 Update: Our Approach to Keeping You Safe at Cornerstone Coworking

To all our Cornerstone Members, 

We hope this update finds you and your families safe and healthy. 

The City of Lawrenceville announced a joint emergency stay at home order with Gwinnett County. Citizens are urged to limit movements outside of their homes beyond essential needs.

We have been in direct contact with the Mayor of Lawrenceville, David Still, and Cornerstone will not be able to operate starting at 12:01 am on Saturday, March 28, 2020, and will continue until April 13, 2020, unless extended.

Cornerstone Residents and other members who have mail service will be allowed access to the building to retrieve their mail, and we will have staff who will retrieve it daily and place in the mailboxes and or the private office spaces as normal.

We will also postpone any membership billings that were scheduled for April 1st until April 15th. If the shelter in place order extends beyond that we will adjust this as well. You will be charged a prorated amount based on when we reopen.

Our awesome staff members are still available to help with any and all needs that can be performed remotely. Please do not hesitate to reach out if you need anything–we want to help!

Use the following services to connect with our staff for any assistance you might need:

  • – Cornerstone mobile app
  • – Website – https://cancollab.com 
  • – Email – Info@cancollab.com
  • – Phone – 770-609-2323

We have been attending video conference calls and webinars and staying on top of the CARES Act which passed this afternoon. Look for some additional emails from us on this in the near future. Until then, here are some highlights of what we understand to have passed.

The CARES Act will provide loans that can convert to grants (no need to be paid back) for the following eligible organizations:

  • > A small business with fewer than 500 employees
  • > A small business that otherwise meets the SBA’s size standard
  • > A 501(c)(3) with fewer than 500 employees
  • > An individual who operates as a sole proprietor
  • > An individual who operates as an independent contractor
  • > An individual who is self-employed who regularly carries on any trade or business

A borrower is eligible for loan forgiveness equal to the amount the borrower spent on the following items during the 8-week period beginning on the date of the origination of the loan:

  • > Payroll costs (using the same definition of payroll costs used to determine loan eligibility)
  • > Interest on the mortgage obligation incurred in the ordinary course of business
  • > Rent on a leasing agreement 
  • > Payments on utilities (electricity, gas, water, transportation, telephone, or internet)
  • > For borrowers with tipped employees, additional wages paid to those employees

Loan forgiveness cannot exceed the principal.

We appreciate your understanding and help during this time. Any updates will be communicated as they come, but feel free to reach out to us with any questions, concerns, or recommendations. If there is anything we can do to help you, let us know! 

We are praying for each of you, your families, and your business during this time and hope to see you all soon.

Stay Diligent, Stay Productive and Stay Safe,

The Cornerstone Team