55: Staying Hopeful in a Time of Fear

Coronavirus/COVID-19 can put you in a down funk. However, the world is in a better state than it appears, and there's always good to be found to stay hopeful.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://podcast.effectiveremotework.com/55
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Thanks for the pep talk.

I think that helping others is a great way to get my mind off all the news that we may consume. Not all news or blog posts are equal.

One of the first things I look at when evaluating whether a blog post or news article is worth reading is value. How does this contribute to my life, now or in the future. Most news reports have a value of 1-3 days. I don’t need to hear about numbers rising or political discourse clashes between opponents. I don’t need up-to-date-to-the-minute news at my fingertips. I’ve limited my news reading to 15 minutes and don’t want to go over that. Most of the time, I’ll be finally going through my books backlog and a few TV series that have been building up in the queue.

If you’re going to consume media, look for something that makes you happy. I’m not talking about endless news reports and partisan rhetoric. I either want to consume media for entertainment (Netflix, YouTube, or my books library) or to help me grow. I’m enjoying my time in the various Discourse forums I have joined. I pitch in my 2 cents and look forward to contributing to a community such as the Effective Remote Work Discourse and other sites. I contribute to the digital community and also contributing to my own local community. Checking up on friends, bantering in direct messages about our concerns. Or pitching in to help others who are not as fortunate.

Have you all done something in the last week that brought a smile to someone in your neighborhood? Have you reconnected with someone you haven’t kept in touch with in a while to remind them that they’re not alone in all this? Let’s find a way to bring some good karma back into the world. People will remember us for even the smallest gesture. Hope you’re all staying safe out there…

Staying physically active and spending more time with my family has brought new meaning to the word ‘grateful’ for me.

I’ve always been a proponent of journaling. I’m a fan of Day One but there are other options. In that case, a long running text document or a notebook app like DEVONthink, Bear, or Ulysses helps to express my inner feelings. Sometimes I can see my words and try to re-orient my thinking and world view. It’s a long, slow process but well worth the journey. Heck, a plain paper notebook works just as well. I was just going through my old handwritten notebooks from my college years and I’m smiling about seeing the struggles of a young adult trying to find his place in this world to an older person seeing things through a different lens.

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