DURING difficult times, it’s important to focus on what brings us joy and unites us with others. This can be accomplished by carrying out simple everyday activities and paying attention to positive events taking place throughout the world, as opposed to showering ourselves with too much doom and gloom.
I believe that we can benefit from simply conversing with others, staying active, praying, meditating and more. While it’s, of course, important to stay up to date with what’s going on around the world today, we shouldn’t spend every day in a constant state of fear and anguish.
Furthermore, it’s perhaps beneficial to reminisce and consider some of the recent happenings that have united us during the pandemic, or simply consider the little things that have provided us a sense of peace and comfort.
With the arrival of The Euros, Wimbledon, and many more, it’s fair to say we have been somewhat comforted by the sense of unity that events in sport often provides us with. Whether this be viewing events from the comfort of our own homes, to watching events live with friends; we have been fortunate to experience some highly entertaining and enjoyable footage—taking us away from the worries and fears of the pandemic for a while. Notably, the former British number one tennis player, Tim Henman, had stated that Wimbledon this year had a ‘feel good vibe’ due to aspects such as ‘having players back after the cancellation’ and ‘having spectators back,’ as sourced from an Evening Standard article.
As some of the restrictions still in place encourage us to be outside, it could be argued that we’ve been provided with more opportunities for enjoyable activities, especially in the summer sunshine. These include picnics, a game of tennis or rounders, exploring and just embracing what nature has to offer. According to an article on Forbes: “Hundreds of studies have linked spending time outside to better health outcomes like decreases in incidences of diabetes and cardio-vascular mortality, lower blood pressure and heart rate, and better immune system function.” The article also highlighted that doctors are now ‘issuing ‘nature prescriptions’ to help treat a range of conditions from heart disease, hypertension, high cholesterol,’ and many more.
This may not have been a particular joy for everyone this year, but for some, going back to childhood games and discovering new ones has been a great and relaxing pastime; taking our minds off more of the serious aspects of daily life. After recently receiving a Nintendo Switch Lite for my birthday, I have been able to escape some stressful moments for a few hours, while exploring more of my creative, youthful side.
Discovering new TV series and films
With the recent reopening of cinemas, there’s no doubt that movie lovers everywhere have been relieved to revisit their local theatre and watch something new, while also providing some of us with a simple change of scene. Many of us are also fortunate enough to have an abundance of TV and movie options at the click of a button, allowing us to spend some well-earned chill time with loved ones, or just for a night of self-care.
However, there are so many therapeutic activities, such as reading or listening to music and podcasts, which are great ways to take some time out—balance is key.
Getting dressed up
Admittedly, this one is tough for me. I love many of my home comforts, and pyjamas is one of them. While it’s often tempting to lounge around in pyjamas all day, I never find myself to be as motivated as I could be if I simply put together a nice outfit. With more freedoms and less restrictions, we now have the change to be creative and plan ensembles for different occasions—and during times like these, the little things certainly make all the difference.
Colette Cooper is a journalist, blogger and creative writer