As someone who’s already toeing the line between homebody and recluse, the thought of an impending, state mandated quarantine didn’t seem that horrible as long as I could be with my boyfriend and dog. If you had asked me how I felt 48 days ago about the imminent lockdown, I would have said, “Piece of cake,” and smiled smugly, but today, on day 48, I regretfully won’t be eating any cake but my words, instead.
Now that it’s mandatory I stay inside all the time, the wanderlust is real. Large gaps in my day are filled with the longing of brighter days, traveling to faraway places like New Zealand or Nepal. I scroll for what seems like hours, desperately trying to connect with my friends through their daily Instagram stories. I miss meeting people and exploring new places, but most significantly, I miss the inspiration and drive I so passionately felt before this sh*tshow. If you, like me, are finding yourself unable to find inspiration during this time, worry not. I’m here with some advice.
- Rediscover an old hobby! This mandatory lockdown is the perfect time to make a new connection with the hobbies you used to love. I felt myself craving the process of physically creating something, so I ordered a set of acrylic paints, and I am now the proud owner of two, very mediocre quarantine paintings. I love them regardless.
- Reconnect with an old friend. One good thing I’ve noticed to come out of this horrible pandemic is the mending of broken or lost relationships. It warms my heart when I see two childhood friends reconnecting after decades of lost communication. There’s no better time to reach out to your former loved ones than right now,with all the destruction and uncertainty that come with Covid-19.
- Watch a foreign film! If you’re like me and you’re preemptively mourning your summer travel plans, I suggest watching a good, foreign film. While watching a foreign movie can’t replace the real thing, it’s a good way to immerse yourself in another culture and if the movie is exceptionally visual, it can take you somewhere entirely new.
For an immersive and encapsulating depiction of Rome, watch The Great Beauty by Paolo Sorrentino. Sorrentino’s visceral and haphazard images create a striking and thoughtful visual narrative that somehow fit together perfectly.
For a movie that is as stunningly shot as it is poetically intimate, watch Love Letter by Shunji Iwai. The cinematography and editing masterfully capture the dreaminess and melancholy of this layered love story. Iwai’s breathtaking imagery of Otaru, Japan is reason enough to watch this film!
- For a film that will leave you with a slow but aggravating burn, watch Bong Joon-ho’s Mother. Bong is a master at blending genres, so you’ll have all your needs met with this tragic thriller. The director’s dark and irreverent style doesn’t take away from the beauty of Korea’s pastoral, southern landscape.
- Go for a walk. Connect with the outdoors! The CDC actually recommends you get at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week. Go outside for a walk and really try to be present. Observe what’s around you, and you’ll find yourself reconnecting with nature and ultimately, yourself. Just be sure to wear a face mask for protection and avoid getting too close to others!
- Get dressed up and go for a picnic! Okay, this one sounds a little corny, but when you feel your best, you look your best! If you’re feeling bleh because of lockdown, I’m right there with you. Even if you can’t go out to meet friends, you can still experience the gratification of getting ready by planning out a lit outfit. Give your wardrobe some new life and go on a picnic. If you can’t stand being alone, plan a date to facetime outdoors! Don’t forget to take cute pictures and if you’re facetiming a friend, take some cute screenshots for her/him and share!
- Give back. It’s dangerously easy to get jaded fast when you’re constantly being bombarded with what seems like never ending bad news. I don’t blame you if you’re guilty of this, but I have a solution. Don’t lose faith! When you help others, you end up helping yourself. Volunteer your services to a charity of your choice. There are so many organizations that need your help to help fight the good fight.
- Feeding America has a Covid-19 Response fund that is helping to ensure that food banks across the country can feed those in need.
- The Red Cross is in desperate need of blood donations in the fight against Covid-19. Donating blood is essential to community health and the need for a supply is constant.