Bob Dylan said that people are crazy and times are strange. Times are definitely strange and the people are going crazy with restrictions and curfews and QR codes. We’re in this kind of upside down inside out universe where the things we used to find a chore, like grocery shopping or going to a medical appointment, have turned into a fun outing.
But there are things that are not fun. Some days I think about this time and all the lonely people. Not in The Beatles Eleanor Rigby kind of way, but just lonely people out there in lockdown. I’d call it Coronliness, except we’re not really naming it after the beer anymore. And when did we drop the 19? I guess we all know he’s no longer a teenager.
If you are Coronely, I send my love and tell you that you’re not alone. We all have our days. I have had many. Be kind to yourself and find some simple pleasures to get you through. Here are some of mine.
Having fun with food
I’ve been ordering a mixed box of fruit and veggies every fortnight from Ooooby. There is a list online of what’s coming in the box, but I like the mystery of not knowing until the box is delivered and I enjoy coming up with what I’m going to cook for the week.
Making a move
I’ve actually started to enjoy strenuous exercise, as it’s the small freedom of not wearing a face covering. When I’m out I try to notice something different that I haven’t seen the day before.
Putting on a playlist
I love music and I’m using this time to rekindle the joy of discovering new artists and finding old favourites. Make yourself a playlist of your favourite tracks. And speaking of old and new ABBA are back.
Laughing out loud
Find something that makes you smile. I’m obsessed with Schitt’s Creek on Netflix and always go back to the show to rediscover laugh out loud moments with the Roses. There are also some funny lockdown memes and videos around. This one is brilliant.
Taking a trip
At time of publishing in Sydney, we’re restricted to traveling 5km, but we can go overseas whenever we like online. Last week I discovered the Dolce and Gabbana Alta Moda Fashion Show in Piazzetta San Marco. The opening scene of the models in gondolas on the Grand Canal gives me a thrill. When you’re done with that, the D&G men’s collection is equally stunning.
Pausing the perfect
I’ll be the first to put up my hand and say that I’m a perfectionist, but now is not the time to be perfect. Put a pause on the perfect and know that you’re doing your best. If on some days that is simply getting yourself fed, showered and watered, then that’s perfect. Don’t be so hard on yourself – and that is a reminder for me too.
Getting into gratitude
What’s your attitude to gratitude? Yep, mine too. Sometimes I feel it’s extremely overrated and cheesy and roll my eyes when I hear about it, but there is scientific evidence that it works. Science aside, I have been keeping a list that I don’t label as gratitude. It’s simply things that make me smile. I go back to it on the dark days and it brings me back to the light, then I look for something today that makes me smile to top up my list.
I’m am very blessed to have fabulous friends to share silly texts and memes or video calls. It’s true that if in doubt, phone a friend. Host a Quarantini night or play some online games. I’m enjoying Codenames and Drawasaurus right now. Stay in touch and keep connecting.
It was Claude Monet who said, “I must have flowers, always and always”. Every week since lockdown started I’ve been buying fresh flowers. Flowers make me happy and bring me joy. If you’re lucky enough to have a garden, go planting. If not, there are some super talented people like The Flower Wonderer making magical floral fabulousness that gets delivered to your door. Surprise yourself or someone you love today.
In our response lies our growth and our freedom.Viktor E. Frankl
At the moment I’m trying to put everything into perspective. A friend shared a post on what holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl can teach us about lockdown uncertainty and I liked the list for its simplicity:
- Choosing how you respond
- Being kind and generous to others
- Looking for small moments of beauty
- Having a future goal or something to look forward to
There are lots of people offering simple ways to boost your wellbeing during the day. I’m sure you already know about all the apps. There’s also some clever articles out there, like this one on self-care during the apocalypse that helps us to remember that we don’t need to be productive all the time. Remember that you are a human BE-ing not a human DO-ing. Slow down and take care of you.
That’s all the lockdown love that I have for you now. Sending hope and light wherever you are in the world. You’ve got this.
Do you have any simple pleasures for strange times? Share them in the comments below.
Crazy people during strange times also read:
- How to stay sane when you’re working from home
- Follow the cracks and they will lead you to the light
- 5 things to help you be in the moment