Okay, I have to admit things haven’t changed…that much.
I’m an introvert at heart, which means my routine doesn’t look much different than usual, save for no work and no travel beyond grocery or pharmacy trips. But the external stress of, well, everything means I still need some sanity savers. I may not get cabin fever like my more extroverted family members, but anxiety? Oh, that’s very real.
But Shanah @ Bionic Bookworm Blog gets it, and today’s T5T topic is for all the things that are still enjoyable right now! Hopefully between my post and everyone else’s, you can find some things to try while you’re working on keeping it together, whether it’s cabin fever getting to you, anxiety riling you up, or just a general, looming sense of dread hovering over things. Let’s take it one thing at a time, like this list, and hopefully we’ll see the other side.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Admit it: you saw this one coming. I’ve talked about it in basically every Weekly Wrap since the day I got it, and it’s been a driving force in keeping me grounded. Cute animals? Chores that earn you consistent money to pay back deadline-free, interest-free loans on your bigger and bigger house? Terraforming your own island until you’re happy with it?
I’ve already poured about 50 hours into this puppy, and there’s no chance I’m stopping any time soon. Not when it’s so damn peaceful. Easily the best of my sanity savers, truth be told.
Hunt a Killer Subscription Box
Last month, a friend gifted a subscription to Hunt a Killer to me, and it has been a joy. If, you know, murder mysteries count as joyful. For real, though, this has been one of the best sanity savers I’ve ever known. I get to puzzle through ciphers and personal correspondence and forensic evidence to uncover a killer, all from the safety of my room. Better yet, I get to do it with my best friend, who also has a subscription! We’ve been Skyping to solve things together, so we get the best of both worlds: human connection, and satisfying the little puzzle gremlins living in our brains. Nothing has scratched my itch to solve mysteries quite like this box!
And even better, Hunt a Killer actually donates to the Cold Case Foundation from their sales. I like that I get to solve mysteries, and money goes to charity at the same time.
My Own Personal Stitch and Bitch Club
The members include me, myself, and I. We have incredibly solid attendance.
Really, though, I remember an upperclassman while I was in college started what she called “Stitch and Bitch” club for folks to come and knit/sew/whatever textile thing they wanted once a week, while also just venting about things in a welcoming space.
While I don’t have a group to vent with, I have really enjoyed embroidery, and I do sometimes run conversations with myself in my brain to untangle my life. I don’t need an elaborate set-up for any of it (embroidery or internal dialogue), supplies are on the cheap side, and it takes up a lot of time. When my brain gets really into it, it makes the hours fly by. Plus, if I want, I can combine it with TV or podcasts! That way, I trick my brain into feeling productive and efficient even though the point right now is to be resting and taking care of myself.
Tricking my brain is part of that, though. It’s not good at resting, and it’s very determined to multitask. So, hence personal Stitch and Bitch club. Extremely effective. Also involves making a pretty picture by stabbing something with a needle. Highly recommended as a venting mechanism. Highly.
I haven’t finished a new project yet, but check out this pre-isolation octopus!
— Meaghan @ Hail & Well Read 💛 (@hailandwellread) February 28, 2020
When work dropped off my calendar and the stay-at-home order came into effect, I was worried. I don’t handle changes in routine well, and at the same time, struggle to maintain routines that benefit me without external pressure.
Cue Hail & Well Read’s schedule spreadsheet, reminding me that I have self-imposed deadlines.
For some, blogging right now is work. It’s super hard to be motivated. But for me, it’s keeping me from lying in bed all day long, doing the same thing day in and day out. I know what day it is because I know what post I expect to publish next. I know what time it is because I realize last minute that I haven’t put a featured image on a post that goes up in less than an hour. Sleeping until noon? Not when I need to polish off the last bits of a review, or take Instagram photos while the lighting in my room is still good, which is only until about 11 am or so.
And if you guys comment? And post your own stuff? Well then, now I have to respond! And read your posts!
Thank goodness for that.
On a more serious (and privileged; I’m lucky my insurance covers therapy) note, my therapist is a godsend right now. She’s been doing appointments by phone due to stay at home orders, and when I get keyed up, she is phenomenal about not getting me even more keyed up. For me, something as simple as someone else (especially a licensed professional, tbh) telling me it’s okay to be freaked out, followed by suggestions for managing my freak-out into a smaller, more rational freak-out, makes me feels loads better. She lets me know it’s normal to feel like I do, while also telling me I don’t have to feel that way when it’s making me feel worse.
I still have a ways ahead of me with my mental health, all things considered, but having a good therapist is a major relief. Plus, I get to chatter at her for an hour once a week or so, and it gets my extrovert moments out and done with so fast.
So, what are your sanity savers? Are any of you doing the same things I’m doing? Do you have any recommendations? Let’s chat!