I turned 58 a few weeks ago. I was a bit late to the Pandemic Birthday Celebration Club. But at this point, it looks like we’ve all become members.
Another year zoomed by. So what did I learn in my previous year?
Last year I obsessed about the Covid pandemic, like everyone else.
But there were still things to learn or relearn.
Before the first lockdown, I read about how our immune system is affected by stress. In a stressed state, your immune system is one of the first things to get turned off. Not deemed important.
I guess in an immediate life or death situation, your body wants to keep you alive for the next few minutes. It isn’t worried about something that might take a few days or weeks to kill you.
If you are stressed out about the pandemic, it makes your body more susceptible to it. Crazy!
So, I made a concerted effort to try not to get too stressed out about Covid.
I partook in some early day, mid-day, and late day “doom scrolling”. But, I would order myself to stop whenever I noticed myself getting anxious. I could stop for days at a time.
And I stepped up my gratitude habit. Every day finding 5 things to be thankful for. And trying to experience the gratitude and let it wash over me.
The funny thing is that before the lockdown I was dealing with a gout flare up that lasted weeks. And it was early in the lockdown that I started doing some Qigong exercises, which I found helpful for my gout pain. Maybe it had run its course. Maybe it was a placebo effect… But I don’t care what it was. It worked.
And I wasn’t sick at all after that.
I usually get a cold or chest cold every year. Not last year.
Now, was that because of the pandemic? Maybe. Like most people, I was inside my house most of the time. Avoiding contagions and people.
We got out for daily walks but there wasn’t much interaction with people. There were a few opportunities to hang out with family or friends. But there was always the physical distance aspect.
Ironic that I had my healthiest year amidst the global pandemic… I also tried to be healthier. I got to bed earlier. I ate healthier. I did Qigong daily for a couple of months. I went for walks.
On the negative side, I got beat up by Resistance. Okay, I let myself be beat up by Resistance. I didn’t do much writing. My playwriting group had a few Zoom meetings, but I didn’t have enough energy to work on my writing.
And then I talked about writing a book on Intermittent Fasting. But I only got started on it and couldn’t complete it. Yet.
Why is entropy such a natural state of being? And why is so hard to fight it?
The main thing that I learned (or relearned) last year was that there is only one way for me to get things done. Especially something that I have been putting off.
Do it in little chunks.
If I start a timer and work on the thing for 15 minutes, I can beat the Resistance.
But it’s a battle that I must fight every time. Like an exercise regimen, it’s easier to maintain a habit than to start one. And if you’ve started one, don’t skip it for more than a day or two or else you’ve got to start all over again…
Break things into smaller chunks. And set a timer and do them.
Sigh. Hopefully, I can keep that top of mind for my 59th year!
© 2021 Peter Gruner