I’ll confess, I’m not really feeling the motivation today. It’s Day Ten of Quarantine, and life is tasting a little stale at the moment. I like very much to have a day off now and then, honestly. But to have endless days off, that’s not healthy for me, either. Day Ten of Quarantine and Day Four since I actually got sick… The past three days have felt extremely unproductive to me. Too much screen time, too much couch time, too much sleeping time, but I’ll have to give myself a little grace. I was sick, after all. However, I am on the mend, and I need a little pep talk to remotivate myself. It’s so easy to fall into depression when you’re isolated from real life.
Some more ideas for quarantine:
Idea Seven: If you are feeling ill, it’s completely permissable to rest. I have trouble being okay with unproductivity, and this makes it a little inconvenient when I’m sick. There are times, though, when our bodies need a break so they can recuperate. So, make that cup of tea, and wrap up in a blanket.
Idea Eight: Read books. This is a perfect thing to do on any cloudy November day. You might try a book that isn’t just mindless reading- something with substance- and in this way, you can exercise your brain muscles. I recently read In Order to Live, by Yeonmi Park. It was a recommendation from my roommate, and gives us an insider’s view of North Korea. It’s not the kind of book I’d typically pick up, so it stretched my horizons. I’m also reading How to Read a Book, by Charles Van Doren and Mortimer J. Adler, which is an intellectual look at the different levels of reading. It’s definitely an educational book, rather than one for entertainment. The other day, I picked up The Fellowship of the Ring again. I started rereading it quite a while ago, but as often happens with books I read, I’m better at starting them than finishing them, so they get some kind of bookmarker and get laid aside. Typical INFP that I am, it’s normal for me to be in the process of reading more than one book at a time.
Idea Nine: Go on a walk. Just make sure you find a place where there aren’t other people. Fresh air can do so much for you. It makes you hungrier, and this time of year, it can leave you a little chilled, which makes it so much nicer, then, to come back inside and drink hot chocolate. Or coffee. Or tea, for that matter. It’s also really good for your mental health to get outside, which, when in quarantine, is especially important.
Idea Ten: Scrapbooking! This particular form of art is therapeutic for me, but it doesn’t have to take exactly that form for you. Some people prefer cardmaking, or painting, or sketching. Art is an expression of yourself, so it will look a little different for everyone. I am almost finished scrapbooking an album that’s destined as a Christmas gift; I think I will limit myself to one more page and call that project complete. But, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other pages to work on! I don’t work on pages or photos chronologically; I’m spontaneous in this as I am in so many other areas of my life, and my mood has a lot to do with what I work on.
Idea Eleven: Write a story. This one I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to follow to fruition. Yes, I have one I’m working on, but that kind of writing takes a lot of time and creativity and committment, if you’re going to end up with something really worth reading. I’ve exposed myself to some great literature over the years, and it’s intimidating, for how can I compete with that? Maybe I try too hard. Some things are better when they’re not forced, and I think writing can be that way.
Idea Twelve: Bake something unexpected. I might just try this tomorrow. I was scrolling Pinterest and found a recipe for adorable hedgehog cookies. Who doesn’t love a cute hedgehog? Fun fact: Baby hedgehogs are actually really ugly. My sister showed me a picture of them, and they look awful! Pink like baby mice, but with prickles… shudder. Back to the baking- often, we have our go-to recipes we make, the favorites that turn out well. Throw in some variation, some surprise, try something totally different. We don’t discover new favorites unless we try new things.