Finding our smile again

Published on:
October 8, 2020

How are you doing? Are you busy and worried? Not very busy and worried? I think few of us have banished the worry. It’s ever present, if only in the background. I learned a new word this week — “doomscrolling.” Who knew that technology, which has been entertaining/distracting/enabling us could also lead to a downward spiral into our morbid fascination with all that is wrong and concerning in this world?! Some used to revel in Schadenfreude because it was someone else’s misery. Now there’s plenty of misery in our own world and it’s all too easy to wallow in it. It’s part of our new normal. How do we break out of this trap? How do we find our smile again?

First off, let’s avoid the trap as much as we can. Remember that the news industry isn’t a public service. It needs to make money like other industries and it does this by grabbing and keeping your attention. And then there are other outlets that distribute information with their own ends in mind. For the record, this is true across the political spectrum.  If you need (for work or just insatiable curiosity) to find some information, be disciplined. Identify your objective. Set a time limit. This is not an exercise in trolling for information or casting a wide net. It’s more like spear fishing. Pick your target. Strike. And get out of the water before you get dragged down.

Second and more importantly, cultivate fun. What is fun? It's finding joy in the moment -- without concern for the world before, after or around you. It's an acknowledgement that life on its most basic level is a triumph over the alternative. But more than that, it's the joy that comes from being your best self, without a care in the world. How precious is that? Not surprisingly, fun is best found in the company of good friends or family (though the two are not mutually exclusive). Odds are they are nearby. Even if it's online, find the time, make the effort and before you know it, you will find your smile.

If you have any thoughts or suggestions you'd like to share, please pass them on by replying to this email. Here are more tips on making the most of your time at home.

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