We have been at this for what? March was what? Three months?
All this time we have been inside the home and getting crazy, many people have already finished their Netflix queues or rewatched Lord of the Rings entirely in one sitting.
Some have finished the videogames that they couldn’t because of work.
Others have taken to writing to keep sane.
And most of us are reaching peaks of anxiety because of the news.
My country is one of the few whose President is still downplaying this thing, and the numbers that are being reported do not match reality.
This are uncertain times.
Which is why we need to have routines and habits in place to ground ourselves.
Routines and habits can give us an anchor, a feeling of control.
I personally use an app called Fabulous. (the free version, I’m not made of money). It is a habit developing app, it helps to build a morning routine that is quite necessary right now, and this are some of the things that I do in mine.
1- Drink Water
After sleeping your body hasn’t drunk water in hours. Hydration keeps the mind sane and helps you feel less hopeless.
2- Eat a big breakfast
Eating a healthy breakfast helps build your mood, and if you work on something like trying new recipes you can get a sense of completion. Cook a lot of things!
We make a lot of happy chemicals, we rely on other humans to create serotonin and oxytocin. But to fight anxiety we can rely on dopamine and endorphins. We get dopamine from sugar. We can get endorphins from exercise.
I have been doing an indoor routine that the app recommends, it’s seven minutes long. And you can vary the exercises it doesn’t have to be what the app recommends.
Sure, I can say, get some time to write and fit it into the routine, but let’s be honest, if we haven’t been able to do it before, with these issues it is not easier.
Which is why I take a page from “How to ADHD” and have created transition times.
Between normal work or chores or whatever, take some time to listen to music, chat with people through the web, scroll through Tumblr. Do something that doesn’t stress you out.
Yet…There is one thing that has helped me with my writing.
A change of phrasing.
Instead of “I have to” or “I must”, words that we associate with chores.
“I get to…” or “I can…” (I am partial to “I get to”) This imply opportunity, something that you “Get to enjoy”, “get to write”.
It doesn’t “have to” be your WIP, but you could “get to” create something new, or try something new.
You could write a post on quarantines, or reach to other writeblrs.
You could also exercise a “Do Nothing” time. Some time where you get to just lay down and let your imagination drift.
Personally. I have learned to juggle.
To finish I just want to remind you all, that we are writers, creators, artists.
You don’t have to keep up with the news.
You could use this time to research. Follow the rabbit and fall down a curiosity hole in Wikipedia.
Be disgusted. Be amazed.
We can challenge ourselves to be better.
Or simply challenge each other sane.
I leave this here for people to build on. Share recipes. Share stories. Share art. Share the skills you aim to master, or a creative list of these movies/books to analyze during this isolation time.
And if anyone needs it, here is the how to adhd video.
Stay safe, stay inside.