We’re living in unprecedented times right now. The only event that’s closely related to the Coronavirus outbreak is the Spanish Flu back in 1918. That’s over a century ago. A lot has changed since then.
Right now, people are losing their jobs, worried about their health and well-being, and trying to make sense of what a life of isolation looks like. These are not normal times.
My Experience With COVID-19
In terms of work, everything is business as usual for me. I already work from home, so no changes there. I work in the business of social media, and while we have had some changes in client work, overall everything has pretty much stayed the same.
My husband works for an incredible company that is continuing to pay him during this time even though he is currently out of work. All in all, we are extremely fortunate to be in the financial situation we’re in. That’s not lost on me because I know there are a lot of people who are struggling right now.
When it comes to my health, well, I’m currently pregnant. That puts me in the high-risk category for this virus. For the last month, the only time I’ve left the house is to attend doctor’s appointments. My husband does all the shopping and runs any errands, but it’s only for the essentials. We are taking social distancing very seriously. For the sake of my health and the health of everyone around me, I truly hope you are, too.
The Pressure From Social Media
With so many people out of work and lots more people working from home, the use of social media has gone way up. (Probably a contributing factor to why my business is so good right now). The pressure that stems from social media has pretty much intensified. And no, I’m not referring to the reminders to wash your hands and practice social distancing.
At the start of this pandemic, there was a meme going around. For the life of me, I can’t find it, but you’ve likely seen it. It was a list of successful people who had done xyz during times of isolation. The purpose of the meme is to motivate you to complete that project you’ve been working on or learn a new skill or just be productive during this time.
For the most part, I think that’s great! If you do have the extra time and you’re in the headspace to do something like that, then, by all means, do it!
But, I know that there are plenty of people who have seen that meme and it makes them feel defeated instead of motivated. They feel this sense of obligation and ultimately guilt because they’re not focusing on their project.
Here’s my PSA to you: It is absolutely, 100% okay if you do not work on, complete, or even think about a project right now. Maybe you’re quarantined with people who are draining your mental health. Maybe you’re feeling so stressed out that you don’t feel creative. That’s totally okay. You have to do what’s best for you right now.
My Writing During Quarantine
To put it simply, my writing has been nonexistent. I’ve done very little writing during this time.
I have so many friends who have been doing lots of writing right now. I am so excited for them because I know they’re making awesome progress. Part of me is a little jealous. Sometimes I think how nice it might be to not have to work so I could write. But I quickly realize that I love my work and I’m grateful to be able to work right now.
Some weeks I think about spending some time writing on the weekend. My husband will ask me if I want to go write. For whatever reason, my creative energy is just tapped out. My story is the furthest thing from my mind. (Definitely don’t like that).
With this pandemic, work has been a little crazier than usual. We get lots more last-minute tasks from clients than normal because they’re trying to keep up with this changing world. My workdays feel long and draining. It probably doesn’t help that I’m in my third trimester of pregnancy and my energy is tapped out quicker than usual.
Basically, all my mind has time for is work and family. Again, I’m super grateful for it and I’m happy about it. I love my job and my family. But when the free moments come, I take every opportunity to just relax.
It would be easy for me to feel guilty about letting my story’s progress slide. Surprisingly, I haven’t felt bad about it. For any writer or creator, forcing yourself to be creative usually doesn’t turn out well. I could sit down and try to write, but if my mind isn’t there, it will make me feel frustrated and guilty.
Give Yourself Some Grace
If you can’t write or create right now, don’t feel guilty. Please. If you are being creative right now, I’m so proud of you! Let’s lift each other up no matter where we are in our journey right now.