Needless to say, the world feels weird right now. It is full of a kind of uncertainty that I am pretty sure is new to all of us.
For me, the idea of being alone with my thoughts during this time is not one that excites me.
So, I thought I would share some things that I have found are helping to keep me occupied. Things that I am doing to “keep the Goblins away”, as my wonderful Grandpa used to say.
- Keep a Diary
Something I have recently starting doing is keeping a daily diary. It is a really good way to wind down before going to bed and I have found that I no longer carry as many negative thoughts and feelings into the next day.
“Journalism is the first rough draft of history”Philip L. Graham
This sums up perfectly one of the reasons that journalism is very important and is a field that I am very passionate about.
What a reporter documents today, becomes history tomorrow.
We are living through the biggest crisis of our generation. The number of people I have spoken to who, despite their varying ages, have all said that they have never experienced anything like this before is extraordinary.
As a result, another benefit of keeping a diary or journal during this time is that we are all have the power to document history. Whether you just decide to keep it private for you to show to your Grandchildren or you choose to write a book about your experiences and share it with the world at a later date, having your experiences during these days documented would be invaluable.
Now is the perfect time to do those things and learn those skills that you haven’t had the time to do.
I am using it to write more blog posts (hi!), to expand on my baking and cooking skills and to get some more exercise by doing videos and going for a walk each day. OH, and beat my Mum at a serious game of monopoly.
As much as I love journalists, and believe that their work is vital, I also think that there is such a thing as too much news. Obviously it is important to stay informed, but try to limit the time spent watching the news and looking at your phone. It will do wonders for your mind, believe me.
It’s also easy to stay in your PJ’s all day because you won’t be seeing anyone. However, I have found it effective to keep doing my hair and makeup putting on my nice clothes each day.
So, put the Spotify playlist on loud, dance around and make a fool of yourself whilst getting ready and I can guarantee an improvement in your mood – even if it’s only temporary. (Please be careful with the mascara wand though!!)
- Friends and Family
Another inevitable symptom of this self-isolation is desperately missing family and friends. I usually see my family much more than I am doing now, but we are staying apart in an effort to keep everybody safe.
Our family Whatsapp group has become very active of late. We have been taking part in a daily, very competitive ‘Kahoot’ quiz and daily phone calls, which are compensating for not being able to see each other.
It is also hard not being able to see your friends as often as usual, but use this time to reconnect with those you may have lost contact with and you will feel a lot less alone, and so will they.
I saw a advert by mental health charity CALM yesterday, that I thought was important to share. They teamed up with television channel Dave to deliver their #BeTheMateYoudWant campaign.
Although the charity aims are to bring attention to male mental health, this message is important for everyone.
Reach out to someone in the way you would want them to reach out to you. It doesn’t take long to just send them a text even, just to let them know that you’re there.
I spent the night before last on FaceTime with my best friend Khadijah who has just arrived home from travelling.
Take a look at her amazing blog here.
Although we have kept in touch, we haven’t had a proper catchup in ages.
So, we ‘met up for a drink’ the way we would in person, which just ended up being water as we were both very thirsty (hardcore, I know).
Before I knew it, a day that started off as being quite lonely ended with a long conversation that had heartfelt words and laughter in equal measure.
But even if you don’t get the response from someone that you were hoping for.
Before this lockdown, I spent 3 weeks at home alone with Scarlet Fever and really needed people. These tough times really make you assess your relationships, work out what is important and has definitely shown who I can rely on.
During this time, it is important to stay positive, stay grateful, abide by the rules and a time that we can all get together again will arrive sooner than we think.
Stay safe, healthy and happy.