I haven’t met anyone outside of my household in months. Leaving my area has become a distant memory. I have met aspects of my personality that I did not know existed. Who knew one’s own reflection could be such good company?
All of these musings are a direct result of quarantine.
Calling this season ‘a period of contrasts’ is no exaggeration. In spite of trying to lavish more love on my skin, I have experienced more breakouts. And in spite of trying to practise indoor exercise and self care, my nerves are considerably more on edge. I know I am not isolated in these opinions. In spite of everything, I know I’m not alone in this. This time has allowed us to be safe, and many of us have had the privilege of being able to work from home. But by no means has it been easy. As with all difficult periods however, there’s always something that can be gained and something learned. I’ve done some soul searching and this is what I found:
So what have I learned from this. What, if any, are the positive outcomes of isolation? I have a few things to share.
Firstly, is that I need people.
We all do. We are social creatures by nature and need each other to rely on and be happy. Extended time alone can be therapeutic, but too much and it begins to feel lonely. I know that friends and family are the most important thing in my life, even though prior to lockdown it felt like I was neglecting a few relationships in order to focus on work. I’m glad this time reminded me to treasure those I love. Life is definitely too short.
Mental health is paramount.
Taking care of it is essential. The same way you nourish your body, it is critical to do the same for the mind. Scrolling though social is fun but again, too much of it can be harmful. Not just the extended screen time now that we’re lacking so much other stimuli, but the fact that usually we don’t come away feeling too good. It’s been great to sink into books I never found the time for before. And to that puzzle on the coffee table that’s been staring at me for the past week? I’m coming for you.
All those sayings about how you never lacked time, ‘you just lacked discipline’ are complete nonsense.
There’s no right or wrong way to do quarantine, and those making us feel guilty for spending this time how we like are totally wrong. So you didn’t start a business, or a podcast or write a book. You took care of you. And really what greater achievement is there?
These are all small things, but they’ve had a really big impact on the way I’ve been feeling. There will always be good days and bad days. There’s no changing that. But simple actions during the day, like a phone call with a friend or family member, or 30 minutes of exercise can make the difference between a good day and a bad day. So whatever comes next, I think I can handle it.