This time has created such an interesting dynamic of anxiety and stress different from the constant go-go-go mentality that existed prior to the global pandemic. You can see more about how I am learning to do nothing and be okay with it here. As an extrovert and someone who thrives on a schedule, particularly one that includes happy hours, eating dinner at restaurants, and travel plans; this has really been an important time and lesson for me. I’ve also been working on staying in touch with my friends to check in, chat, and talk about anything we’ve been trying. After hearing some of the things that they’ve been doing during this time, I asked them to put together a little write up of how they’ve been passing the time, while social distancing and taking care of themselves. Here are tips from 5 of my friends on How to Make the Most of your Time.
The Empowered Women Series: 5 Friends Tips on How to Make the Most of Your Time
Alyssa – Chicago
I’m surviving quarantine by playing Zelda on my Nintendo Switch. I don’t usually play video games this much, but this game has me hooked! I can run through large fields and feel like I’m outside even though I’m not. This game has been my escape from stressing about the real world. The scenes and music are absolutely beautiful.
Amy – Happy Valley
Clarke – Raleigh
Kayd – Charlotte
During this quarantine, I have taken up a lot more running. I have always been a big walker (and I continue to do that daily with my niece and nephew!) but have never been a huge runner. I much prefer a fun workout class! Obviously with the SIP order, “fun workout classes” are hard to come by. I started to run so that I could spend time outside and so that I could release anxiety. Some might say its more healthy than my nightly glass of quarantine-wine. The inspirational quotes I pass in the neighborhood aren’t too shabby either. After almost 6 weeks of this, running has slowly become something I look forward to. I don’t ever see myself training for a half marathon or anything of that nature (I told my runner friends that the only reason I’m trying to run faster is so that I run a shorter amount of time), it is definitely something I will keep doing when this quarantine is over!
Kristin – Raleigh
I have always been a future focused person and love having things to look forward to. Although this has served me well in having plans and checking items off of my bucket list, that way of thinking also prevented me from living in the present. Up until seven weeks ago, I packed my downtime to avoid my fear of staying home alone with nothing to do. I would send out mass texts every Wednesday to figure out the best possible options for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. My weekends were packed with social events and activities to fill my extrovert bucket. The ideas of plans falling through on a Friday night was considered my worst nightmare.
On March 19th, the impending reality of sheltering in place for an undetermined amount of time hit. To prepare for my perceived nightmare coming true, I consulted a friend who advised me to look into weekend hosting a shelter dog. I have always been a dog person. I grew up with dogs, adopted a dog after college, and had been considering getting another one for the past year. The only thing holding me back was all of my plans. I missed having a dog but liked the lack of responsibility that came with not having one. I could literally do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, for however long I wanted.
With nothing to do, no one to do it with, and no end in sight, I sought out my quarantine buddy at Saving Grace. Tink is a senior beagle and was randomly assigned to me. I am embarrassed to say that the first thoughts that popped into my head upon seeing her were “how old is she?”, “why is she coughing?”and, “don’t beagles howl?” Fast forward seven weeks later, Tink and I go on daily 3 mile walks around downtown Raleigh and she no longer has a cough (although she does adorably howl when ambulances go by). Tink has forced me to get outside more often, wake up earlier, and stay on a regular schedule (which my planner self needs). She has also forced me to be more present. Back in the beginning of March, I was constantly thinking about my mental to do list and what I was going to do next. Tink has helped me to appreciate the moment and life’s simple pleasures such as sitting in the grass on a warm Spring day. I would encourage anyone to shelter in place with a shelter dog!
How have you been using this time at home? Do you have any extra tips on how to make the most of your time? Let me know in a comment below!
You can find posts from the quarantine here.