We are now about a month into this new norm of social distancing, practically cleared out social calendars, and a completely new normal. In the beginning I fought this change, then I got really upset and angry because my life changed without my consent, and now I accepted this is my new normal. However, what happens when the world starts to re-open. What will happen then? I’m talking about how our schedules will look then. Will they be jam packed? Will they be light with lots of white space? Likely for the first time in your life, you have a chance to reset or start fresh.
I am reminded of a yoga class where the instructor started the class by explaining meditation and her experience with at a recent 10 day silent meditation retreat. Upon arrival at the retreat, all communication devices are taken and so the silence began. The first couple of days are an adjustment period. The food served is lite but you are starving since you are use to consuming far more calories. Mid retreat you find that the lite meals are more than enough. You move about your day with limited activities. You do not speak to others but you see them. Your thoughts and emotions range from high to low. Eventually you find peace. At the end of the retreat, you go out into the world that hasn’t slowed down or quieted. The world around you is running a million miles a minute. There are noises coming at you from all different directions. There is auditory noise, visual noise, and you just need to figure out how to get home. On your trip home you realize that you have some decisions to make. Do you pick up where you left off? Do you resume your life pre-retreat despite knowing that you have changed? Do you eliminate or add to your future?
How are you going to plan your future? For me, I am reassessing everything that was previously on my calendar and deciding if it is necessary. Necessary to me is life saving such as food, mental health, and medical care. Clearly my definition of necessary has changed after going through and continuing to go through this new normal. I am going to use my new definition of necessary to chose what stays, what goes, and what is going to happen.
Allergy shots are necessary. Running three days a week is necessary. Training with a trainer twice a week is important but not necessary. Honestly, I am considering dropping it back to once a week when the world re-opens because I hate when my non-work time is scheduled. Groceries are necessary. Do I continue with grocery store pick up or starting physically grocery shopping? I am leaning towards grocery store pick up so less of my non-work time is scheduled. Plans with friends and extended family is necessary. But how often do they get time on my schedule will change. Do I schedule white space for my little introverted being? YES for the sake of my mental health! Do I continue to spend time flat ironing my hair? Probably not. Do I continue to stop by my local library multiple times a week? Probably not. Do I continue my no shopping ban? ABSOLUTELY. Do I regularly schedule hair cuts? Nope. Do I continue my minimalism journey? HECK YEAH.