The first three weeks stuck inside with my family had me celebrating time to garden, time to unpack after our recent move and rejoicing that my husband and I could finally office together! Generally I’m a pretty optimistic person. I write articles about “looking for sunshine” and “creating beauty in our everyday lives.”
But on the Monday the fourth week of social distancing, the tone changed, and I’m not talking tiny bits of grumpy … more like “please go away and don’t make me get out of bed today.” I would love to say I rose up, changed my attitude and the day improved, but if that was the case we wouldn’t have anything to talk about today.
Sadly, I sat in my pajamas running back to my warm covers as often as I was allowed with two small boys. I would also like to say this helped, but again if that was true we wouldn’t be talking today. One hour of funk dragged into a full 10 hours of miserable funk, and when I went to bed that night, I didn’t know what would make it better. What I did know: I couldn’t spend another day like that.
So, I turned to my helpful and generally optimistic Instagram followers for advice. So here, my friends, is my list of things to help you get out of the “Social Distancing Funk:”
- Kick off the day with a cup of coffee
- Watch something funny
- Start blasting dance music
- Do a random act of kindness for someone else
- Mow the yard
- Tackle a project you’ve been meaning to do forever
- Listen to a podcast
- Take a long walk in nature
- Take a bath
- Get your hands in some dirt
- Write something, anything … get those feelings out on paper
- Name the sadness
- Look around and find one beautiful thing
- Write a list of things you’re grateful for
- Take a nap
- Call a friend or family member
- Make a list of your favorite things and do one
- Write a to-do list to and take the first step
- Re-read a favorite book or series
Sadly, by the time I asked for help, my Monday was scrapped, but there was hope for the next day. I set intentions to make that day the best one I could. So I wrote out a happy list of things to do for the next day!!
Tuesday dawned and I forced myself out of bed earlier than I usually would have on a quiet, socially-distant day. I noticed and truly felt myself smile when I looked out the window and saw the boys playing with their rabbits.
Today hasn’t been perfect, but it sure has been better. I had a special cup of coffee. I enjoyed the tiny things I have rather than what I’m missing. Best of all I have a sense of perspective … this too will pass.
Elizabeth Santelmann is a transplant to Oklahoma City and recent storm survivor. She has three boys and in her spare time she loves reading, gardening, homeschooling and capturing beauty in photographs. Find her on Instagram @sunshineinmynest or online at sunshineinmynest.com.