Hello fellow humans!
It has been a while. Actually it hasn’t been that long, but this week has felt like an eternity.
I don’t need to repeat what we have all been reading and saying – these are crazy, unprecedented times. It is strange to think that last week I was ordering thermals on Depop in preparation for jumping on the ski train to France. Now I am wearing those thermals because I’m trying not to waste too much energy on heating, while working from home. I started therapy earlier this year because I was feeling anxious, isolated, and overwhelmed by global crises. Now it seems the entire world is feeling anxious, isolated, and overwhelmed by one massive global crisis.
But in amongst the uncertainty and lack of toilet paper* and cancellation of everything I was looking forward to (no Glastonbury this year!), there have been little moments of joy that I’m holding onto:
- A handwritten note posted through our letterbox on the street, offering to lend a hand if we needed it.
- Meeting up with a couple of mates for lunch to support a local cafe on the first day of working from home (ahh, those were the good days, four days ago, most cafes are now closed except for delivery).
- Appreciating the flowers and blossoms while running every morning (the running is even more essential now I don’t have my daily bike commute).
- Extra messages from mates in Australia, just checking to make sure we are okay. Sending videos back and forth to family, which is a little easier than calls during the week due to the time difference.
- A lunchtime walk to our local zero waste shop Ripple, where the positive tunes were pumping and we were able to buy pasta (the team there are absolute legends and drove over to Bristol in person to restock!).
- The positive news stories that are pouring in from all over the world of communities coming together and supporting each other, embracing the importance of being alone together.
I hope you all have a lovely weekend! I have already done some yoga with my new friend Adriene, and have plans to go for a bike ride to the forest, investigate how to support some local businesses, read my book(s) and maybe even get out my watercolours.
Stay safe and take care of yourself and each other!
Some possibly helpful links
I don’t let a lot in my inbox these days, but I had three newsletters this week that helped more than anything else I have read.
Future Crunch: We are waves of the same sea
Future Crunch emails are usually a highlight of my week, and this one gave me a much needed dose of sanity.
The Slow Post: Slow living in challenging times (I don’t think I can link to the content, but you can sign up here)
This one helped me identify a worry that I hadn’t even realised I had. “There is now an added pressure of ‘making the crisis count’. We’re being told this is an exceptional opportunity to do all the things we never have time to otherwise do.” I’m trying to remind myself to be gentle, that I don’t suddenly have to achieve a bunch more things in the extra time I have at home.
A Very Folk Rebellion: I Am Not Malfunctioning. You are….
This one snapped me out of the compulsive loop I was developing of checking news websites, then my emails, then social media, then WhatsApp, looking for both human connection and the latest updates. It wasn’t helping. Yesterday I turned my phone off and hid it under the couch (sounds radical, but I was on the computer working all day, it just broke the scrolling compulsion). That helped a bit.
And a podcast recommendation, which is one that I have made before. The latest episode of Outrage and Optimism is a compassionate discussion of the impacts and responses to COVID-19 globally at the moment. It also raises the point that the massive government commitments made to economic stimulus packages in the last week have the potential to shape the global economy of the future, and must be delivered in a way that accelerates decarbonisation.
* We are actually totally fine for toilet paper in our house. We forgot to cancel our Who Gives a Crap subscription while we were in Australia over Christmas, so a new box arrived last year long before we needed it. We are now down to our last 57 rolls, so give us a shout if you need any!