Looking at us now in 2020 – a new vision

I started this year with resolutions towards improving my inner peace. I took a short retreat in January around Feldenkreis and mindfulness to kick off this work. I’m glad I did because who knew what was lying ahead in the coming months.

We managed to get a trip to Japan in just before (and while) the world was starting to shut down due to the coronavirus disease that originated in Wuhan, China. As my brother told me, we experienced a “unique Tokyo” with plenty of room on the train and sidewalks for the three days we were there. And, mostly we wandered the sidewalks and looked at things from outside since many of our planned activities had been cancelled or closed. (Someday, I hope to see the Teamlab Digital Art museum..it will certainly warrant a post here on T-F)

Golden Pagoda
Golden Pagoda in Kyoto, Japan

And, now as I write this post, we are on a Stay at Home order from our local government, the state government and advice from the CDC. There is talk of lifting it but the spread of COVID-19 is not over. Hopefully, slowing, but not over.

And, with the sudden need to rely on technology like video conferencing, social media, shared cloud drives, etc – I am seeing all kinds of changes with technology and how we use it, appreciate it, don’t appreciate it and how it impacts our life. Such a techy-feely place to be, isn’t it?

Twitter is awash in memes, contests, info wars and arguments over how to move to online learning quickly and well (those might be counterproductive). And, our entire society is changing. I am very impressed with the New York Times visualizations around how this virus quarantine time is changing how we spend our money and our time.

Of this data from the NYT, I am fascinated (and see it in myself) with the move away from phones and back to a computer for entertainment like YouTube, Facebook and Netflix. Usage is going up but app usage is going down. We were used to and complacent with the small screen when it was convenient (and not being tracked by an employer) but now that we are home with our 27 inch monitors and personally provided internet not going through corporate firewalls and switches, I see that it is easier to use a “full” browser for entertainment and work.

Beyond the changes in technology usage, I see changes in our day to day life. We are cooking more. Cleaning more. Maybe not with clothes. Or showers. And, don’t get me started on the coronavirus hair-dos.

To get back to the mindfulness and calm that I was so wanting to nourish this year, I am working on noticing the small things in nature around us as we take a walk each day on the same path and sidewalk. I have started to notice small changes: more or fewer blossoms than the day before, a bird feeding its young, trash that appears or disappears, fewer cars passing by (actually, I wish I noticed that – stay home, folks!)

The questions remain: How long will we stay in place? What will change when we go back to whatever is next? So many companies are going to be changed forever (if they even survive) and we are changed forever personally. I hope that for most, we find new focus on important things like family, spending time together in person, hugs, opening the door for someone.

So, 2020 will continue on. No telling what happens next. That is really always true it just rings more true right now.

Stay safe.

Stay home.

Stay healthy.