So, here we sit, in a pandemic that has taken normal away from 2020. I had started my journey thinking, “I’ve got this. With no commute, I have more time to create. I can write more, run more, and paint more. Who knows, maybe I will even write that book I have been thinking of doing. It all starts with a good routine, right?”
I began my journey doing writing workshops and yoga, running more, painting more, and felt alive. About three weeks in, I realized I had many doors open but was not managing to get through any of them. That was when my manager at my day job was eliminated, and many more would be deemed unneeded for the upcoming months. Working alongside Human Resources, the amount of loss becomes a bit overwhelming. My super-productivity plans quickly lead to a very familiar foggy feeling that signals the first signs of depression. I knew it would pass, but the circumstances were so much different. I do not usually hang out in denial or anger when there are significant changes in my life; I tend to hover in my demon of depression. Now, do not feel sorry for me because, unlike some, I have tools learned along my life path to deal with these times.
The first one is reminding myself that I will be ok, that this will pass. That sometimes, we are caught in a riptide that does not allow us to get back to shore, but if we swim parallel to the coast, the tide will shift, and the journey back will be with the waves instead of against the current.
Assess if you have too many doors open if you do, it is best to close all, but one so your focus can be regained. If you are accomplishing nothing in your day, focus on even the smallest of accomplishments. It might be as simple as taking a shower, brushing your teeth, or combing your hair. Whatever it is, be proud that you did it, did something, did anything.
Do something just because you want to. I made a cake from scratch just because I felt like it. Not necessarily the best cake, but it was something I had wanted to try to do. I think I will be buying my cakes from the store from now on, but at least now, I know.
Try to set goals to connect with others. A neighbor dropped off some sidewalk chalk one day, so adult me used it to decorate a portion of the driveway as a break from work. I used it to draw a birthday greeting for my father, socially distanced, of course, and even did a fund-raiser for cancer teaching kids how to draw different things with chalk.
Just taking things one day at a time was enough to get me out of the fog back into being of value to the person that matters the most. Who is that person? I am that person. You are that person. What will you do for yourself today to show you care about that extraordinary person at the heart of each of us?