Things to do more of during the Coronovirus outbreak

Living healthily will involve walking and exercising more in nature, and perhaps more one-to-one communication.  Photo by Sebastian Pichler on Unsplash

It’s going to be very quiet throughout much of Europe, and much of the world even, over the next few weeks or months.  Social leisure activities will be severely restricted, as will many people’s work activities.  We will all have to refocus our lives on different things, and live in different ways.  Economically, countries will have to learn to organise themselves around less, not more.  Less travel, less socialising in large groups, less physical contact.

Here are a few things – healthy things – that may become more common:

  • Meditation.  You only need a complement of one person for this.  There are many, many guides online, so it’s a chance to learn and practice, without the temptation of the normal distractions.
  • Writing messages to each other.  With more time, why not write longer messages.  The internet has become full of tiny messages, and we have lost the art of writing more extended pieces.
  • Online learning.  Learn a language, or an art, or a science.  You will have more time to focus, with fewer things getting in the way.
  • Shopping and doing chores for others.  Without unnecessary social contact, it will still be possible to provide practical help for others.  Regular help with the weekly shop, gardening, cleaning cars… all these things are possible without physical contact, and are a chance to demonstrate support.
  • Video conferencing and chatting.  People who have not yet acclimatised to communicating by video may find themselves launched into the skill.  Software providers may increase their provision of easy-to-operate multi-user video communication, so that families can get together virtually.
  • Walking and running.  Being outside will seem more attractive as an alternative to being indoors.  At an appropriate social distance, people may well walk and run more, alone or in pairs.  There will be a chance for in-depth one-to-one talk, rather than group chatter.
As to government and economic activity, here are a few things that are on the cards:

  • Minimum basic income.  It is much more likely that nations will contemplate increasing the minimum statutory income per person, to make it possible for everyone to live, so that commercial activity becomes a luxury rather than a necessity.  This will improve the quality of life, enabling far more people to live without financial fear.
  • Social care improvements.  For years, social care has been a little bit spasmodic and variable.  We are likely to realise that this is not good enough, and restructure our resources to ensure that the vulnerable can be cared for, temporarily or permanently, separately from the rest of the community.  It is also probable that there will be an increase in the volume of social care staff, performing functions such as shopping, checking on vulnerable individuals, and providing social support.
  • Reduction in flights and improvements in group travel.  The main changes are likely to be fewer airlines, fewer flights, and better alternative-fuel transport facilities.
cropped-relo-20180125-remindful-logo-transparent-bg2.pngA MEDITATION

Am I ready for change?  Can I cope with a more contemplative life, with perhaps more time spent alone?

Can I treasure my relationship with myself, via meditation and mindfulness?  Can I develop deeper relationships through extended communication, perhaps writing more?  Can I learn new skills?

Can I help myself and others get used to new communication media that are second nature to some, but awkward to others?

Can I perhaps get back in touch with nature, living less frenetically, and more healthily?