Some time ago, pastor Freed used this quote ion his blog Jack’s Winning Words –
“Sometimes it takes courage not to be discouraged.” (Ben Ferenze)
That quote seems very appropriate right now, as we enter day two of our state’s lockdown order (I count yesterday as Day 1, even though the Governor’s Executive Order didn’t technically go into effect until Midnight). The events of the last 2-3 weeks have been like shoes dropping – you just kept waiting for the next one to drop. They were dropping so often and so fast that it began to sound like a tap dance number from a Broadway musical.
Now, we’ve all become virtual prisoners of the virus, confined to our homes. As I wrote a few days ago, that does not mean that we allow ourselves to become victims. We must summon up the courage not to be discouraged. One way to do that is to keep busy in positive and constructive ways. We may have been forced into situations that could seem to be boring, but it does not have to be. A good number of us have to try to work from home. All of us have those small projects or jobs around the house that we have been putting off. One of our church members has reported that she finally has the time to do the cleaning and pantry organizing that she has been putting off. I know that my workbench is a mess. I better get on that.
Most of us probably have family or friends that we’ve been meaning to talk with or write a letter to, if only there was time. Well, guess what? Now you have nothing but time. Get busy and knock out those projects and jobs, write those letters or make those calls. You will be surprised how welcome your letter or call is and good it makes yo feel to finally get around to doing it.
For those who don’t have a lots of the things listed above to keep them occupied, I would recommend creating some for yourself. If you belong to a church, organize a calling circle among the congregation members to keep in touch with and check up on fellow members. If you are a tech-savvy person , use Skype to make calls to other tech-savvy people. There is something uplifting about seeing and interacting with another person that way, even if it is on-line. There are groups that write letters to troops stationed in war zones – find a group in your area and start writing.
If you are well and able, volunteer for charity groups like Meals on Wheels or other groups that deliver goods to shut-ins. Even though you may have to talk to them through a closed door as a precaution, it is better than just sitting at home and talking to yourself. I’m assuming that Meals on Wheels is exempt from the shelter in place order – it certainly should be. I’m sure that there are otgher volunteer organizations that could use your help – if you are well and able to help.
For some this may be the opportunity to try something new that you’ve been putting off. I have an app that I bought over a year ago that I’ve just not taken the time to learn. Now is that time. If you’ve read this blog and thought to yourself that you might like to try blogging, if you had the time – now is the time. There are all sorts of good advice blogs on how to write a blog.
Almost any of the ideas here will be more satisfying than sitting and mindlessly watching TV or playing endless games of solitaire. Many involve interacting with others, even if electronically or through a letter. Some just involve the self-gratification of finally accomplishing something that you have had in the back of your mind. None of them involve sitting around feeling sorry for yourself or seeing yourself as a victim.
Have the courage not to be discouraged and get busy! You’ve got things to do, people to talk to or write and maybe places to go. You don’t have time to be discouraged.