What we once took for granted as a normal progression from one day to the next, with a modicum of activity and speed, is now quite different, even perhaps disturbingly so. Sitting around under conditions of voluntary or enforced #quarantine can seem like an eternity, with no relief in sight.
What do we next? How are we to occupy our time? Are others feeling as bored as we do? What are the alternatives? Is this new life experience something to welcome, or to dread? How will things change, once we pass beyond these temporary deprivations, disruptions, and distresses?
One thing that I have learned from some of your 21st century scientists of the mind and spirit (you call them psychologists or counselors) is that sometimes despair can serve as the impetus for growth and change...a motivation to take a radically different path, instead of stubbornly doing the same exact thing that led to trouble in the first place.
Wave goodbye to antiquated work ethic ideas
Perhaps this thing we’ve so proudly called the “Protestant work ethic” needs to be seriously and totally overhauled, once and for all.
So much of my focus used to be on the virtue of staying busy, productive, and fully engaged (even over-committed, when done to the extreme). Now, however, I am re-evaluating my attitudes and expectations.
During this global slow-down in activity, perhaps we are being given all this newfound spare time for a good reason. The spirit of the universe may be telling us to remove our collective noses from the grindstone and take a moment to ask ourselves, “is this really worth it?” There may just be some very destructive, unhealthy, and unproductive patterns we’ve all gotten into as the result of our obsession with things like employment, politics, organized sports, etc. This may be the time to step back and change our course for the better. Even the environment will benefit!
We might want to spend more time with family... or perhaps devote attention to contemplating new interests, new skills, or heaven forbid, a new profession... or we could make it a point to stop and smell the roses, in other words, to take notice of the beauty surrounding us, the infinite pleasures of sights, sounds, scents, and other sensory experiences, that we’ve either ignored or put aside in our mad rush to acquire wealth, possessions, power and influence.
This spare time is a gift, my friends. Use it wisely!
Your humble servant,