By Rahul Puri
Sigh. It has come to this. Corona has done the impossible. It has made 1.3 billion people deal with their lives within the four walls of their homes. TV and Internet, are now our only escape from the real world. These virtual windows are keeping us sane, because there is no one outside the literal windows of our homes. Lockdown and curfew - words that once conjured up images of the world falling apart around us - are now trotted out with such regularity and ease. Alas, this is what's meant to be, at least for now and the near future.
One might panic, for they wouldn’t know how to deal with this gloom filled doom. You can’t go to a bar or a club to blow off some steam. Heck, you can’t even go to a gym or a movie. Whatever you need to do, has to be done indoors. Since we have all the time in the world, and are stuck at home, why not try these five handy tips to help ourselves be sane – 1. Get some exercise. No you don’t need to suddenly decide to get ripped or follow all those daft influencer videos where they are challenging you to superhuman things. A simple workout routine with some stretches, sit ups, push ups and even running on the spot is enough to get out your sedentary life. Not that loads of us got plenty of exercise before but then we also weren’t sitting on our butt most of the day - so work out regularly and try to stay healthy and in a shape that isn’t similar to a vegetable.
2. Have a routine. Your work day probably had one, but now that routine has gone for a toss, hence things are a little uncertain and people lay awake all night, thinking - ‘oh no, what will I do tomorrow?’ Simple. Make a new routine. You can decide when to work out, when to sit in front of your computer and do some work, when to have a conference call with your family, when to watch your shows – the usual lot. A routine brings order in this chaos and it will, in the least, take away those nagging questions that hit you in the middle of the night.
3. Learn something new. You might have seen your friends and followers take up a new activity, or return to their childhood passion (hobby, if you please). No one is forcing you to do something productive all the time, but if you have the time and means to do something new, why not try your best? Everyone always makes the excuse of not having enough time to try out various other exciting stuff in life. Well guess what? Now you have all the time in the world, and nowhere to be at 9am. Learn that language you have always wanted to learn, teach yourself guitar and impress everyone with your serenading skills, write that piece of code, or like me - learn Photoshop and the myriad of creative programs out there! It gives you a sense of accomplishment, and helps bring some positivity in your life, which is very vital these days.
4. Make time for your family. I know this sounds silly. You are anyway under lockdown with them, that too indefinitely. But rather than being a sour-puss about it, use that valuable time to make some great memories. Play family board games, cook amazing dishes together, talk and do plenty of daft things. My daughter practiced her face painting on me. I looked like a clown but the look on her face is something I will never forget. It was priceless. Call your family if they are far away from you. If earlier it was once a week or twice a week, call them every few days now. They are going through the same experience as you, and probably worried for about you too. This will bring you together, more than ever.
5. Lastly, try to be grateful. There is plenty of negativity floating around. Turn on the TV, look at Twitter – we are lurching from one piece of bad news to another. But there is a silver lining. You are at home, safe and sound. You are healthy and are surrounded by your family/ loved ones. Y’know - it could be worse. It is, in many parts of the world. So have some gratitude, and be grateful to the people in the essential services who still ply their trade so our world doesn’t stop spinning completely. They need our support, not our self-imposed misery.
Right now, I am playing monopoly with my kids, learning photoshop and dreamweaver and watching ‘Kingdom’ and ‘The Mandalorian’ on TV. This too shall pass, and we will come out on the other side, as improved versions of ourselves, better than the versions that went into this dark phase with uncertainty. Look forward to the light at the end of the tunnel. Serenity awaits.