Whether you are reading Book 1 of the Roman poet Horace’s work Odes or are watching modern poet Robin Williams in Dead Poets Society, it seems like a great time to take this advice.
We are currently experiencing a unique time in the world. Children of all ages are home from school. Adults are home from work. We are being inundated with words like pandemic, virulence, shelter-in-place, financial depression, and a bear market. And I know it’s tough to see past it. But we need to take a minute and see where we actually are and what opportunities are presenting themselves to us.
Call me Pollyanna. I am choosing to see the silver lining of this dark cloud. We are being given a gift─ the gift of perspective and time. We are being forced to slow down and take time for ourselves and our families. And I, for one, am going to take advantage of it. Stop reading the news on your phone and watching it on TV all day (the headlines will be there later).
Here are a few suggestions to consider:
- Call or video chat with a family member that you have not been able to see in person.
- Call a friend you have not spoken to in a while to see how they are doing. Reminisce about the good old days.
- Institute family game night, movie night, or reading night.
- Watch an old movie (I recommend a Cary Grant-a-thon including Arsenic and Old Lace, To Catch a Thief, and His Girl Friday).
- Watch a new movie. If you haven’t been to the theatre in a while, it is time to transform your home. Grab some popcorn and a drink, get comfortable and rent a recently released comedy or action flick.
- Stream a TV show you’ve wanted to watch.
- Read a book. Sometimes I choose to read a new book to experience something for the first time. Sometimes I want an old book that makes me feel good (for example, Treasure Island and The Count of Monte Cristo). And sometimes, I even read the books I lied about reading in high school (A Tale of Two Cities).
- Try something new, such as learning a language or cooking a fresh meal. The internet is filled with new ways to learn.
- Go for a walk or bike ride and soak in the sunlight – but remember to keep your social distance from others.
- Get started on Spring cleaning. Now is a good time to clean all the rooms and corners you’ve been putting off.
- Sit down and review your living expenses (just kidding – kind of).
This period of uncertainty will not last forever. We will get back to a degree of normalcy. But now is the time to reflect on what that normalcy could be. Maybe some of the things we incorporate into our lives now, while we have the time, could become permanent changes. Nothing is worth more than this day.