Working from Home and being remote has suddenly lost its je ne sais quoi. It has been exactly a month today since India announced its shutdown on March 24th and like many around the world with strong stay at home measures (Italy, Spain, India, UK), we are trying to embrace the new normal. But this is the thing, predictability has never won the game. Perhaps it works to entice you to Starbucks for that amazing Pumpkin Spice Latte each October, but in life, the unexpected and spontaneous are what sparks our soul and keeps life interesting. According to BBC News, an estimated 88.1% of the global workforce have had their jobs fully or partly closed. The lucky ones are working from home, but cabin fever has definitely set in.
So here are a few fun and unexpected things to do to spice up your 100th day ( it sure feels like it!) and your continuing effort to shelter and social distance to save many lives as well as that of your near and dear:
Find a comedy show that you can follow. I feel like Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert have managed to keep it real but also give us the opportunity to remember that life is about joy and seeing the irony of the situation. Colbert’s analysis of Trump’s daily national briefings are often far better than the actual White House press conferences, while Trevor Noah’s, Daily Social Distancing Show interviews with Bill Gates and Governor Andrew Cuomo on the pandemic have been pure gold.
Stream a play! Yes, theaters are opening up their doors virtually though many have been forced to close their actual doors in March. The Hampstead Theatre in London has been streaming plays for free for the public and is currently showing The Tiger thanks to a tie up with the Guardian. Get front row seats right at home!
Look out for celebrity workout sessions. Everyone from Fitness diva, Jillian Michaels to Hollywood Hulk, Eric the Trainer, who trained the hunk Josh Chan of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, are offering free zoom exercise sessions to whomever wants to join in. Keep checking Instagram for these calorie- busting, packed sessions with trainers who know their stuff!
Read a great book. I am a fan of book stores and supporting writers around the world. Reading can transport you to amazing places, fantasy lands and beyond, plus it is something the whole family can do on a lazy hot afternoon or a cozy evening while winding down for the night. I just finished Emma: A Modern Retelling by Alexander McCall Smith inspired by seeing the 2020 remake of Emma and it was amazing to read Jane Austen’s novel imaginatively adapted for modern times. Rediscover how nice it is to have time to read.
Last but not least, help a charity or do something for your local community. Our thoughts should go to how we can help our first responders and the elderly. It was heartwarming to read how the venerable hotelier, the Taj Group, is offering over 20,000 free meals a day to help feed displaced migrants across key Indian cities and first responders. Helping others truly is a way to forget your own limitations and throw life in perspective.
After all, when Cabin Fever starts to set in, just realize that things could be a lot worse that staying home and safe. Keep your life joyful and help others, this too shall pass.