While nothing is back to normal as we knew it, the question of how we have spent our lockdown is a daunting one for many. There’s a sudden realization that we collectively skipped a season but was it time well spent?
Going from what I saw on social media, learning a new language was top of the ‘pandemic to do list’, closely followed by getting fitter and reading more books. Oh yes, and we would all come out as expert yogis and meditation would no longer have secrets. However, reality shows me that things might not have gone according to plan. Although we couldn’t physically shop that much, overall consumption went through the roof. Consuming in the form of snacking, binge watching series, continuously watching news updates and social media scrolling seems to have been the main activity for many. And that is making lots of us feel guilty.
The question is why do you feel bad about it?
It’s not like there is a pandemic roadmap or a general consensus on how we should spend time when we are all locked up in our own houses. Who even knew that what started out as a nice two weeks off would become four months of worldwide madness?
Nobody was prepared for this and, in all fairness, most of us had no idea what to do or how to behave. So, I ask you – is there anything so bad about the way we actually spent lockdown?
Why not look back at your own lockdown in a relaxed way, giving yourself some slack about whatever you did or did not do during this time. Just being thankful that you’re still around makes life so much easier.
Another feeling that is worthwhile exploring is the feeling of contentment. Even if you are not 100% satisfied with yourself about what you have accomplished during this lockdown, you can be content. If you’re reading this article, you have survived so far and, without wanting to sound too dramatic, many people have not.
Even at your lowest point, it is possible to have a sense of contentment, even when things have gone totally and utterly crazy. Lots of people are linking their happiness to the condition of everything falling into place first. Or in this context, waiting till we go back to how it all was pre-corona. If you do this, you are creating an instant struggle by not accepting the current situation. And, more importantly, you give control to something that will influence your state of mind but that you have absolutely no control over.
Accepting the current situation is what helps to get your anxiety levels down.
Simply letting go of the urge to change what can’t be changed (eg. I don’t want this virus to be here) will instantly bring you a sense of relief.
Rachel Bonkink’s new book Flex Your Mind, 10 powerful Yoga principles for less stress in a busy world is published by Practical Inspiration Publishing, £12.99. https://practicalinspiration.com/product/flex-your-mind