Isolation - Is This Our New Reality?
“A caterpillar must endure a season of isolation before it turns into a butterfly.
Embrace the time you have alone, it will only make you stronger.”
– Steven Aitchison
It is so easy to get caught up in the panic and hysteria that is going on all around us, and I am going to admit that I was a victim to it too. I had a freak out and spoke to some of my friends and family members, and they too are having a hard time with our new temporary way of living.
“Being stressed, being anxious is a choice that you made. You chose to have this perspective. The way to move on from it is to just let go.”
– Kerwin Rae
I realized I can either allow this panic and this fear to take over me, or I can make the most out of my time. Holidays are just around the corner, (Sukkoth, Halloween, and Thanksgiving). I can allow this to demobilize me or I can get my list of to do's done. So I started to clean. I ended up organizing all my paperwork (that is been sitting in boxes since I moved two years ago), clothes and books (deciding what I want to keep or let go), and organizing my closets.
I grabbed hold of all the books that I have kept on the side as my bucket list to read and sat down and started reading and losing myself in the wonder of books again. It has been way too long, and it was incredible. I highly recommend.
This made me think of all the other options I have to keep myself busy and happy while alone. Instead of sitting on my bed and binge watching Netflix and getting groggy and depressed (not to say this is the worst idea either), here are some other options:
1. Weight Loss – Many people are complaining that sitting around at home is making them gain more weight. Personally, I am having the opposite effect. I am not eating take out or restaurant food and since I am keeping busy, I barely feel hungry. When I do get to my mealtimes, I don’t eat as much as I used to.
Some suggestions to keep you on your weight loss journey are to stay as active as you can. There are hundred of exercise videos available on YouTube that you can watch and do. There are exercise apps that send annoying reminders telling you that you haven’t moved for a while and to get up and exercise.
Personally I blast music and dance around my house. My favourite song right now that is playing on a loop even as I write this is “Party for Two” by fellow Canadian, Shania Twain. I also love my 90’s music, euro, dance, house, hip hop. Really anything that gets you happy, excited and moving. Personally I am not a fan of rock, it makes me angry, but if it works for you... do that too.
Get moving! It is important to get moving and not sit around.
I also keep to my three meals a day without snacking all day out of boredom.
Remember – weight loss is 80% food, 20% exercise.
2. Open the windows. Get fresh air, change the air in the house. It will do wonders… even with the rain and the crisp air of fall.
3. Self Care and Grooming – It is so easy that when you are home and have nowhere to go, you wake up, barely wash your face, head to the kitchen and start eating breakfast in pyjamas and the next thing you know it is 7:00 p.m.
It is so important to dress up and take care of oneself as if they were leaving the house. By no means am I saying you need to doll yourself up, but brush your hair, brush those teeth, shower, wash your face (and hands) and get out of your pyjamas. It will change your day. Your mood will be better automatically. You won’t feel so sluggish.
4. Take a 10-minute walk, if possible and not in quarantine, just isolation. Keep in mind the Ministry of Health’s guidelines, keep your distance and stay healthy.
5. Connect to People – We have electricity. We have the internet. Make phone calls, use Skype, WhatsApp, Zoom, FaceTime, and connect with the people of your life.
Yesterday I had a tea date with a friend and it was absolutely lovely. We were each in our homes, made our own teas and chatted for almost two hours via WhatsApp video call. It was like hanging out in person and made us both feel better. This helps both people – they get their time to vent, talk, update you on their life, and as do you, and it keeps you connected and grounded.
This also will warn you of the people that are taking things in a negative way and are showing signs of negativity, toxicity and possibly abuse. It helps you know that it is time to maybe distance yourself and even walk away.
Many times in situations like these we see people’s real faces.
6. Take Care of Yourself – This is a great opportunity to do what you want. Spend time with yourself. I am especially speaking to the single men and women. Many articles, quotes and general dating advice questions how one can find a person to love if they do not love themselves? How can a person find someone to date, if they don’t even like their own company?
Take advantage of the mandated isolation to get to know yourself and build a relationship again. Figure out your likes and dislikes. See if anything changed. You can do arts and crafts, write that book you have been putting aside, journal, and take advantage of the many free online courses available.
7. Children - If you have kids and feel like you want to either kill them or yourself just to manage everyone’s schedules, do yourself a favour and make life easier for you. Create a daily schedule for them – learning/homeschooling, play time, television, arts and crafts, letters to grandparents, holiday decorations, weekly bible portion sheets, virtual tours that are now free online, etc.
8. Food Prep – Made a huge shopping before the isolation mandate? Great! Check out different recipes online and have fun with it.
Again, of course, if you are really having a tough time, do not suffer in silence alone. Reach out to the people in your life. If you think no one will be there for you, join online social groups and connect with people across the globe. Do not let yourself get lost in these times. We are all in this together.
One more thing – Not sure where everyone stands in their religious beliefs, but if you are religious in any which way, or believe in a higher entity more than our mundane lives, just a little touch of religion for you.
The virus is called Corona. In Hebrew bible text, the philosophers and rabbis of our time found a written explanation by a very holy man named Rashi over something in a weekly portion that had the words "קרוא נא" pronounced "Kruh Nah". This translates in English to ‘Call to Me”.
If you are feeling down, and us mere mortals aren’t enough to help be there for you or calm you, now is the best time to connect to your maker, your creator, your higher source, whatever you want to call it.
Connect in any way that works for you – be it meditation, prayer, lighting candles, reading Psalms, through your Chakras, focusing within, watching nature and how wondrous our world truly is – anything that helps you connect. Talk, connect, apologize, forgive, request, pray, and love.
Rebuild the relationship, work on an existing one, and be accountable for it as well. This will not only strengthen your belief system, but it will also help you build communication skills, build an understanding of how you see the world and how see your part in the world. Having a belief and having a relationship are two different things, and now is our time to reconnect to your creator, your source.
Again a note for those that want to build a relationship, whether single or married now, when all of this is over, this time will have helped you build a relationship with yourself where you were fully honest and open to who you are and it will help you be honest with your partner in the future.
I wish you all a lot of luck in this. Make the most out of your time. Don’t let yourself get lost. Connect. If you need anything, please do not hesitate to connect with me. I am here for you.
We have been given an incredible opportunity to really get to know ourselves again and re-evaluate our lives. It is up to us what we do with this time. We can choose to wallow and waste the days, we can let the panic take over, or we can reconnect and come out like a butterfly, bigger and better.
Wishing you all a wonderful day and an uplifting inspirational isolation time!