A rule of thumb for singers is that to correct a mistake, one must sing the phrase correctly seven times in a row. Once that is accomplished, the old (wrong note) habit is overtaken by the new habit, with the right note.

We’ve now been in the COVID19 lock down for more than seven weeks, so, if my singing teacher was right, our new habits should now be automatic — or not. The change to society and our individual lives is so massive, I think it will take much longer for this to be normal, or even the “new normal.” 

However, even though “Zoom” is not my habit, I’m learning to use it. I’ve had chats with my family, thousands of miles away, and with my writer friend, twenty miles away, and with my writing group, VIRA, scattered all over the place.

I’d still rather see friends and family in person, but the VIRA meeting was interesting. Holding it on-line meant members who live far away could actually attend the AGM. Those who are afraid to venture out because of their own health conditions or those for whom they are caregivers, were able to attend over the internet. A silver lining for one cloud.

Our group had planned to have an all-day workshop in September with a guest speaker — from the US. Since travel across the US-Canada border is restricted to essential only, that workshop cannot go ahead as planned. Still, we’re making arrangements to hold it on-line. We can have a lot more attendees when physical space is not a consideration. Another silver lining.

Many jurisdictions are moving to relax restrictions, but the physical distancing requirement and the travel ban are still in force, so even a technophobe like me has to learn technology for connecting.  A personal visit over a cup of coffee without the distraction of my own face on the screen — man do I need a haircut!– is my preference.  But, on a platform like zoom,  I can see my friends all need haircuts as well. Misery loves company?

Mental illness is an increasing concern at this time. Anxiety and depression threaten to make a bad situation worse. Staying connected is a coping strategy so things like Zoom meetings are a good antidote.

Depression tends to make one lethargic. Use the “ten things” or “seven minutes” strategy discussed in my Post Avoidance blog. Even a small effort, like walking 50 steps,  can increase one’s sense of well-being.

Help someone else. That is a long-proven strategy for dealing with negative feelings. Even if you are stuck at home, there is someone you can help. Maybe organize a Zoom chat, or contribute to a charity, or make phone calls to other shut-ins. There is always someone who needs a helping hand.

Move. The human body was meant to move. Walk around your yard, or run up and down stairs or make 15 circuits of your kitchen. Exercise has enormous benefits, both physical and mental.

We all have to adapt to the world we live in now.  Those of us set in our ways may resent the changes, but scowling and grumbling isn’t going to solve anything and may make us sicker. If you’re feeling down, please look for the silver linings.

I wish health and happiness to all my readers. Zoom is a useful tool for getting us through this tough time.                                                                    




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