Alright, here we are in week three (or more) of social distancing. Can you believe that the beginning of March looked so different and yet all of April will effectively stay the same in our daily lives? (Is that too dismal to say? 😞)
My boyfriend and I have been staying with his parents in New Jersey for the past few weeks. I’ve seen a number of friends also leave NYC to be with family, which is a risky decision where you could be the one spreading the virus to less affected parts of the nation. This trend of privileged New Yorkers fleeing the city seems to be met with shaming on the internet, no surprise (just search “Hamptons” and you’ll see tons of complaints, though fleeing to one’s vacation home is not exactly the same). But the choice to be elsewhere can also bring us closer to our loved ones and help our mental health greatly (it definitely has for me).
Whether you’ve left your primary home or not, whether your town is critically affected or not, we can all choose to be good citizens and support with action. Some things you can do to help out from virtually anywhere:
Make sure to fill out your census!
Shop from restaurants, shops, and independent artists! Try your best to be mindful of where your money’s going—for example Everlane is running a 25% off everything promotion right now, but they also just laid off most of their customer experience team. You could spend the money on clothes to support laid off employees instead! Or buy local from places like Awoke Vintage who are doing their best to continue paying hourly workers. Note I say “try your best” because I am still ordering from Amazon sometimes... 🙅♀️
All things considered, I am doing incredibly well lately. It feels weird to admit but harboring guilt about enjoying this time doesn’t seem to be useful either, so I want to embrace feeling good.
I am very grateful that I have a job for which I was already accustomed to working from home and that I am able to converse, connect, and have a semblance of family right now. The best part has been having long, unplanned stretches of time in a sunlit room of my own. Creative projects, books, puzzles, and crafts that I’ve been putting on the back burner are reintroducing themselves as playful options to pass the time.
Some trivial discoveries that have been giving me life:
Have you tried papaya with lime juice? Delicious + zero smell.
Youtuber MadFit’s short and effective workouts. Love that she has “no jumping” videos for apartment dwellers.
This free Mindfulness for Uncertain Times course from Reset NYC. Each day has a different meditation technique, some reflection questions, and a daily focus. Makes a great intro to mindfulness and takes only thirty minutes per day.
Clairo’s music in general, but this SG Lewis x Clairo song especially.
Last but not least! I realized I haven’t shared my recent work via newsletter so here goes some shameless plugging:
I have been working on a three part series on burnout for SuperHi, an online creative education school/community. Here’s the first piece on why creatives burn out and the second in conversation with hand letterer Lauren Hom. I would love to do more writing like this so if anyone has recommendations on places to pitch, send them my way 🎉 Also I strongly recommend SuperHi if you want to learn more code and design. They’re offering 30% off all courses and are giving away fifty scholarships!