The year 2020 has introduced us to our new superpower, that we never ever knew existed- and that is our 'power to be flexible'! As Covid-19 spikes and remote learning stretches on, we have seen ourselves finding new ways to be flexible, and to connect with the world around us, that otherwise we would have avoided! Remote learning and working from home has helped me to create a positive space amidst these uncertain and scary times. I feel I've become more disciplined, productive, and responsible, and have been able to break the cycle of negativity; and have been able to overcome my fears just by slowing down and being present!
If we focus on the positive side of this pandemic surreal life; we will know that it has not only done worst for almost everyone [in some way or the other], but there are lots of positive lessons we've got to learn from this coronavirus crisis! With remote learning being our choice for our kids; and feeling stuck, stressed, afraid, and tired of waiting for things to get better- I've seen many positive lessons I've learned so far! And one of the greatest gift we're currently getting is the, 'gift of time.'
Our regular life demands lots of rushing like; rushing to work, or dropping our kids at school, running the errands before kids come back, scheduling meetings [sometimes dealing with back to back meetings], commuting to work back and forth, etc. even if it means leaving behind our special needs to relax and slow down! But quarantine life and lockdowns has cut off much of that "hustle" life for us. And we've been able to give up some unhealthy; even though comforting habits we've held on to for so long, and that is- "the tendency to stay busy!" We are gifted now with ample amount of time to lean into slowness, by allowing ourselves to stay in the present and to actually do the things that's important now, and giving ourselves permission to be slower than usual.
Things have moved so quickly and everything has changed so much around us since mid-March; that it has been so hard to let everything sink in, and or to come in terms with everything we have experienced during this time.
From mid-March I've seen myself moving forward with some positive adaptations to these changes, even though sometimes I feel the pressure and life seems a grind; with kids doing the remote learning, and husband working from home, I'm learning to survive and thrive these challenges with some positive mindful practices! And the first thing I try to remind myself each day is that, anyone who is able to work from home, and kids who are able to continue their remote learning, are very fortunate. They are safe and close to us! Instead of complaining I feel thankful to have a job to survive, and some amazing hard-working teachers to take care of our kids' education.
So there are some amazing eye-opening lessons I've learned during this time! And I'm excited to share the learning, wisdom, and the growth happened to me while we were complaining about being cooped up in our houses! I hope you find them helpful too.
1. I found the balance.
I found the balance to engage myself with my core inner-self, to engage with my kids by slowing down and staying together for a very stretched period of time, to have meaningful family engagements, to involve myself and my kids in some very meaningful learning, without having to feel overwhelmed! It is very important to find this balance in our life to thrive in a do-it-all world, and to stay happy and healthy!
With full-time remote learning, I learned to balance between my work and my life! Life gets much easier when we know how to stop, or slow down, and to breathe when life gets overwhelmed and stressful! I've had this amazing opportunity to have less distractions and more productive work done during this time [that still continues!]- while working alongside with my kids.
2. I learned about the power of human connections.
Social connections are more important than we actually think! Connecting with others can empower you, can give you hope, and power, and can help lower anxiety and depression, and also helps us in regulating our emotions! Social distancing or social isolation showed me the void of connecting with others and I got to learn, how important is our 'need to connect'!
I was happy to see my kids connecting with their friends through remote learning; and a smile on their face made me feel happy and blessed to have social connections- even in a distant way!
3. I learned about the sheer power of "small" and "invisible".
Think about the power of coronavirus for a while! It is so small, and not even visible to our eyes; but it has brought the whole world to a standstill. Isn't it? We're all so fragile, vulnerable, and more weak than we actually know; but we got stronger and confident to win over this small virus by believing in ourselves, by staying hopeful, by being patient, by staying confident, and by standing together. The effect of this virus was so ginormous that it resulted in the crashing of global markets, shutting down of schools, restaurants, and universities, and the cancellation of almost all public gatherings worldwide!
And if I think about the life lessons; I clearly see myself standing tall amidst all the chaos, noises, and fears; with the hope that we can keep ourselves, and our family safe by taking necessary measures, and by making some important choices! We can stay home and save lives, we can wear a mask when outside and can mitigate the spread of infection caused by this virus. We can teach our kids the importance of remote learning and social distancing, by following the rules and discipline measures in the classroom or on zoom calls!
4. I became responsible
I got this ample gift of time to rethink my whole process of doing everything that I normally used to do! I learned about the new and creative ways of learning, working, writing, reading, growing, connecting, sharing, collaborating, and helping one another. I learned about the big shifts that was happening right in front of me, and adapting to those changes and accepting them wholeheartedly helped me to be more compassionate and empathetic towards myself and others!
And through remote learning, I felt the need to be more responsible, to be available, and to be able to fix situations as an when needed; especially when it was about setting clear boundaries and expectations for work time and downtime. Working from your home have some advantages as well as disadvantages; especially when your kids are at virtual school, and your partner is working-from-home too! But working at your convenience and from your favorite space at home removes the downside of forced choices of working from home and remote learning, due to the global pandemic.
5. I became more productive
The word productive can be little overwhelming, even though we love hustling around our days! But for me, being productive during the remote learning sessions for my kids helped me to slow down, to prioritize, and to understand my core needs. From mid-March I've seen myself doing more writing, reading, blogging regularly, and working hard as a writer, or as a future author! Through virtual learning, I've had the best opportunity to follow schedules and dedicate my time for reading and writing.
For the first time after so many years, I started writing in my planner; to record my things-to-do that very same day or for the whole week! And I've written more blog posts, I've done more artwork, and have read more books than before in such less time, and with less distractions.
6. I completely tuned-in to my mindful needs.
For me being productive is also about 'being present' in the now, and about doing everything I can do in these given moments! During this crisis, I learned to take better care of my health and mindful needs. I was able to connect with my health, wellness, and spiritual care on a very personal level! When we study about ourselves mindfully, we feel more tuned with our mind, body, and soul; our thoughts tune into the present moment rather than thinking about the past, or worrying about the future.
Through remote learning, I was able to sit down with my kids to do all kinds of "mindful activities" we had learned together either in their school, or through YouTube videos; to stay calm, to feel less stressful, and to submit our tasks on time! I learned that we must stay active even when we're all cooped up at home, and that's actually possible! I learned news ways to strengthen our immune system, to sleep a little longer, to relax, to engage in creative activities, to laugh more, and to spend more quality time with the family!
I've had this awesome opportunity to slow down, and to lean into relaxing breathable moments during the day. This kept all of us sane and productive- in a very positive way!
Everything may sometime feel out of balance, but keeping these reminders has helped me to ease my fear and anxieties about how to accept and navigate this 'new normal' life; personally and professionally!
This unprecedented time has taught us so much! And the greatest of all is to be flexible, to be more responsible, and disciplined.
I have learned so many positive lessons in these seven months, that I'm all set to create my next eBook on this! Even when things look scrambled and beyond our understanding, we must remind ourselves that, "we are in this together, and we're stronger than we think, and we will get through this together!"
Similarly remote learning has introduced me to see everything from a very new perspective, and even though it feels stressful and uniquely overwhelming, we've learned to mull over the various possibilities and creative ways to meet the needs of education, work, or growth!