Living in the New Normal
Back when quarantine started in March, like most of you, I never would have guessed how long it would last. I thought for sure everything would be back to “normal” by mid-summer at the latest. Well, it turns out I wasn’t quite right. Summer has come to an end, school is back in session, and it seems that quarantine is not ending soon. Of course, I am grateful for staying safe; however, I would love to give my friends a hug again. Since this probably won’t happen in the near future, I have three strategies I’ve relied on that I hope will be helpful to you!
1. Being a very organized person, I absolutely love making lists. I make them for pretty much anything that I do. Whether it be daily tasks or longer projects or even the shows I want to watch, I will have a list for it. I did this long before quarantine, but I have found it particularly helpful during this time! In a time where productivity looks very different, it keeps me feeling productive. Having a schedule to follow every day – even if it is just the shows I want to watch – keeps me feeling accomplished versus feeling like I wasted the day.
2. In addition to having my lists and a schedule, I like to include educational material with the fun shows and movies that I watch. Believe it or not, I get bored watching too much TV, so I like to break it up with content that makes me think and that I can have a constructive dialogue about. Some of my recent favorites have been Immigration Nation and 13th, which can both be found on Netflix. Netflix also has an option for watch parties, which makes it fun to stream with friends and have conversations with them about it. This is a great way to vary the content you are consuming and stay connected during quarantine! With so much happening in the world right now, I find it incredibly important to stay informed and to educate myself and others on different issues. Not only is it eye-opening, but I feel that I have learned so much about other cultures and people, which has been really fascinating and beneficial for me.
3. On the other hand, it can be very overwhelming to watch and read the news. There have been times when I find that I need to take a break and focus on self-care. If I can stress anything, it is that self-care is an important part of bettering oneself. When I become overwhelmed, I will take time to play with my dog, take a shower, go on a walk, or watch something light to take my mind off of things. Taking this time helps me come back to the news or whatever educational content I am reading/watching and engage with it from a fresh perspective. I think that balance is an essential part of being a human. So, while it is vital to learn and challenge ourselves, we also must learn to take time for ourselves to reflect and refresh.
Now that we are six months into quarantine, reflect on how you have been managing through it all and recognize how you have progressed. At the beginning of all of this, it was hard to predict how we would adjust to the new normal and though some days are certainly better than others, taking some time to look at all the positive ways you have moved forward is so important – and you deserve it!
Create a FUN to-do list!
Although making lists might not produce the same amount of joy for everyone as it does for me, there is still a certain satisfaction that comes with crossing something off of one! For the upcoming week, write down three fun (quarantine friendly!) things you want to do. These can be shows/movies you want to watch, friends you should connect with, or just something that makes you happy.
Once you finish the task, CONGRATULATIONS! Now, cross it off your list and be proud of your accomplishment!
*Meet the Author*
Siena graduated from Chapman Univesity with a B.A. in Film Studies and a minor in Leadership Studies.
Favorite Quote: “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them” – Walt Disney
Fun Facts: 1) I’m from Minnesota 2) I work at Disneyland 3) I love going on hikes!