We live in tumultuous times.
From politics to climate to the coronavirus, it seems 2020 has left its mark in every facet of our lives. Southern states have experienced several tropical storms and hurricanes, and we’re not even halfway through hurricane season. The West Coast continues to burn as wildfires ravage forests that have been around for centuries. Iowa had a derecho this summer that decimated 10,000,000 acres of crops across the state.
COVID-19 has claimed the lives of over 200,000 Americans and 990,000 people globally. On top of all this, we face an unpredictable election in nearly a month. It can be overwhelming to constantly be in tune with what’s going on in the world. This is why it’s important to find comfort amid the chaos of 2020.
Given what’s at stake, we can’t lose sight of what keeps us grounded and focused. This could be spending extra time with family on the weekends, or trying new recipes we’ve been putting off for a while. Dedicating an evening to binge-watching Netflix or having a group video call with our friends can keep us sane.
It may even seem self-indulgent to give in to fun — especially when it feels like our attention is being pulled in different directions. Still, we should remember to check in with ourselves occasionally to make sure we’re doing as well as we can, given these times. If we don’t, we may find ourselves burned out, simply trying to “get by.”
As individuals, we must remember to take time out for ourselves. This is a great opportunity to try out new activities at home, or discover different hobbies. I’m spending more time reading — with a goal of getting through 50 pages of my book each weekend. I’ve found that dedicating this time to myself each and every week mentally resets me for whatever the next week may bring. We can all make a similar commitment to spend time with ourselves and prioritize a little “me-time.”
This is not an excuse, however, to refrain from tuning out the news. It’s incredibly important, now more than ever, to stay on top of what’s happening in our country and around the world. Not only will being attuned to the news keep us informed, it will enable us to have meaningful conversations with others about what we’re all living through, together.
No matter what our beliefs are about the Black Lives Matter protests, COVID-19 conspiracies, or the replacement of the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, being educated and informed about the world we live in is crucial to being responsible citizens.
The personal commitment to be our healthiest selves, both physically and mentally, will help us make it through the year to come. We can keep going, motivated to be at our personal best, but only if we prioritize ourselves when we need it.
- Thumbnail: Harli Marten/Unsplash
- Dogs: visuals/Unsplash
- Books: Christin Hume/Unsplash