Thank you for visiting my blog.
I was watching one of Alain de Botton‘s videos, which I would highly recommend, and he said something very interesting I thought I would share it with you:
“…Almost all of us are addicts, not in terms of a substance you are taking. No! Addition is basically any pattern of behavior whereby you can’t stand to be with yourself and actually cannot stand the uncomfortable thoughts and emotions that come from being on your own and so therefore you can be addicted to almost anything as long as it can keep you away from yourself. Most of us are addicts! Thanks to all sorts of technologies and distractions, we can have a life where we are guaranteed not to spend any time with ourselves”.
And here we are, stuck in our houses, by ourselves, with our thoughts. I know everyone’s situation is different. Some of us were able to join their families before the lockdown started, some of us are currently in a different country (for studies or work) far from their loved ones… Yet we are all somehow feeling alone with our thoughts. Uncertainty of what is going to happen next is definitely fueling that feeling. We are used to planning, structuring and setting goals. It actually became a trend to have a 5-year plan, which is obviously important. It gives this sense of control and structure in one’s life. We are almost half way through 2020, and the one thing we never expected to happen happened!
The picture I used for this post was one I took 2 years ago. Something about it reflects a lot of the emotions I am currently feeling, and portrays perfectly the ideas of this post. The tree looks isolated, somehow alone. The winter weather hit it hard! Nonetheless, it still looks beautiful and unique; it stands out from the others! Indeed, this year is unique and “eventful'”, a year to remember!
Although it is not intended, in this post, to start on a negative note, it was important to acknowledge the reality of things. It has definitely not been easy for me to adapt to this “new normal”, and I am still figuring it out, as most of us do. Now that I am done with exams, I have more free time. I read, watch movies, but also think and journal. Writing has been part of my weekly habits, though the things I write about and dig deep into are different now. I would say, I am less on my phone compared to what I expected. It almost feels like social media does not distract me as much, or at least does not satisfy this need of entertainment/ distraction the way it used to. Pinterest is the only app I am active on. I really enjoy this App because it displays posts based on your likes and pins. Therefore, I find myself in a positive and motivational environment, as opposed to Instagram or Facebook, where you can’t really control what you are exposed to.
Let’s all think back to when life was “normal” before this pandemic hit; I would describe it as busy, stressful, and fast, with obviously happy as well as unpleasant moments. We can agree that, at some point, we loose ourselves in the midst of everything. The thought of having to slow the usual rhythm of our daily life was shocking, hard to imagine, challenging (and still is!). Picturing ourselves at home all day was strange. Some of us are with their roommates, spouses, family members, or all by themselves. In any case, the challenge was there! One week in, and the trends on YouTube switched: Cooking challenges (with a LOT of banana breads recipes), Cutting my husband’s hair, 20 tips to effectively work from work…. and the list goes on. People are adjusting, are trying ways to get the most out of their day! They are talking more with their families (through FaceTime, or Skype), texting more, husbands are now involved more with cooking and house chores, Legos, puzzles and painting are back and are THE pass time of choice.
Allow yourself to sit and think. It is not always a pleasant experience, as we can have unstructured thoughts, thoughts from the past that trigger negative feelings, thoughts about the future that trigger anxiety and frustration. But these are the same thoughts we bury inside us and act as if they don’t exist, or at least not until they resurface again.
This is the best time to evaluate your daily activities, habits; your daily self. What do you usually do? What are the habits you always wanted to include into your routine but never did? Reassess yourself and visualize your Best self. This can be on both professional and personal level. What were you proud of when you had that last meeting? Why did you feel that way when your boss commented on your report?
We tend to question ourselves, second guess our thoughts, but never actually take the time to sit down and try to understand the real reasoning behind our decisions and actions.
If anything, this is the right time to do so. To teach ourselves to be comfortable with the idea of being by ourselves, with our thoughts. There is no such thing as overthinking, as long as it is structured and with a purpose. Worrying and stressing are inevitable. I must say, as this pandemic is all based on uncertainties and confusions, it is teaching us to be more flexible and maybe let go of things that are out of our control, which is something I am constantly working on. Being comfortable with uncertainty and sudden changes is also a skill we are learning more (a bit the hard way!).
The world has slowed so you can rediscover yourself
🔸Pause, Sit, and Reflect, but as you are doing it: Be Intentional and honest with yourself!
Now it’s your turn: What has been the best lesson you learnt from this quarantine period so far?
I hope you enjoyed reading this post! You can also find also on Pinterest.