2021 starts with renewed exhaustion. Many hoped Covid would finish up at the end of the year, discarded along with the Christmas tree kicked to the curb. Nope, it’s still here. Little has changed except a 20 turned into a 21. Winter looms long ahead.
Nonetheless, I’m grateful for my recent respite in Georgia for the change in scenery and that restorative new aspect: other people. I’m fortunate in that Covid has yet to come knocking on my door either to take away my job or my life. The worst I suffer is lonely monotony and the closure of most of the businesses around me.
January work proves harder to restart; oh, this job again. In a recent revelation, I’m changing up my attitude to the pandemic months ahead. Stop trying to make this period into something different, and start embracing what this time is good for. Focus on the following:
1. Rest and relax
Slow down. Shed stress. Attempt less in a day, as there isn’t much to do anyways. Sleep nine hours or more a night if you want. Embrace sunrises. Notice the quiet world turn around you. Read a lot. Any giant novels you want to explore? Play video games. It’s okay to be 12 or 70 years old.
2. Get healthy
Cultivate healthy habits that will serve you into your 50’s and 60’s. Repair your rockstar body (and that’s not a positive trait). Stop drinking, mostly: what’s the point if people are not present; alcohol can otherwise just be toxic. Cook for yourself, when you feel inclined, elaborately. Keep yoga-ing even if you find it boring, as exercise improves your flexibility. Drink a lot of tea. Run to the ocean. You may have only 80 more half-marathons to run until 50 years old.
3. You’d Better Work
You may not want to hear this, but work. Work a lot. Try to cram a year’s worth of work into the next six months, so when the pandemic lifts, you can concentrate less on the job. Learn new technology. Work on big projects. Don’t change jobs, as it is quite hard to start remotely in a new office.
4. Don’t worry so much about social
Feeling alone? That’s okay. Feeling cut off? That’s understandable. Less contact with others is likely epidemiologically healthier. Shutting yourself in need not be a forever thing. You’ll go out again and enjoy the crowds when that part of your life returns. Try to make your connected time meaningful and not just Zoom drink-a-thons.