In an almost unprecedented moment in history when the majority of the world sits in quarantine, it is times like these that coming together becomes of utmost importance. From global city shutdowns to mandated curfews, we as individuals are forced to sit in the confines of not only our own homes, but our own thoughts, feelings, and inner most conflicts. And that, in and of itself can make for extremely difficult times.
The current climate of navigating a global pandemic is uncharted waters for multiple generations, lending itself to a sense of uncertainty that is fueling fear felt across the planet. Regardless of age, gender, and our social and financial status, humans as a species are being advised to self-isolate from one another, inevitably changing the way we live our current lives. Looking at the situation from a broad lens, our day to day schedules are no longer what they were a week ago and our comforting routines are now non-existent; but why feel the need to hold a negative connotation to that?
With this new alone time that we are all facing together, let us pivot the fear we associate to the words such as ‘quarantine’, ‘self-distancing’ and ‘isolation’. Instead, we should see these suggested actions as opportunities to grow from within, discover ourselves and new hobbies, and rekindle relationships we lost in our once chaotic lives. It’s a rare moment when we are asked to take a break from our frantic day to day to just be still. Let us flip the lens and see how we can utilize our time to better ourselves and others.
Now is the best time to sit and have a think on where you see yourself in months or years’ time, focusing your mind on internal personal growth. To some, this growth might relate to religion, sexual orientation, family, marriage, friendships etc. Self-distancing is the perfect opportunity to have that hard talk with yourself, the one you’ve been putting off for some time now, accepting your flaws and mistakes while processing how you can grow from them. Always realize there is light at the end of the tunnel and remember, nothing changes if nothing changes.
One of the greatest gifts of seclusion is that it pushes us to become creative in order to keep ourselves and others entertained. In turn, this creativity and the amount of time we have to use it, births new and interesting hobbies. You might find in the coming weeks that you actually can and do enjoy cooking. You might find that you weren’t as bad as a painter as you originally thought. You might also discover a new found love for literature or horticulture. In these careful times at home, use your hours to find what you truly love and loath, and carry that with you well past isolation.
Another, and maybe the positive construct that we can focus on during the pandemic are the relationships that we lost or burned. The world is a far better place and we are far better people when we let go of hate in our hearts. Take these weeks to go back in time and understand differences from a new perspective. Offer forgiveness to those who you have wronged, and forgive those who have wronged you, even if the purpose is solely to allow yourself to heal. During our quarantine, let’s reach out to those who need it most – pen a letter to a mom and dad letting them know you are safe, check in with your estranged sibling asking how they are doing, phone an old college friend living in the more impacted part of the world. Whether a hand written letter or a positive late-night phone call, these gestures will be welcomed with open arms regardless of reasoning, especially in today’s climate.
No matter how you spend these upcoming weeks, we all must band together in isolation to spread positivity and be there for one another, checking in on our friends who need it most.