Blogs for the Foreseeable - It is all about you

Written by Helen Beecher Bryant

Yes – it is all about you

I brushed my hair yesterday, for the first time since 1992. We’ve all done all sorts of things we wouldn’t usually do over the last three months. Or not done, such as seeing one’s hairdresser. In usual times, I spend more time with my hairdresser than anyone I actually know; we’re friends on Facebook – now that’s friendship.

Unless you live on another planet, your life has changed beyond recognition over the last three months. Whoever thought that The Archers could become a series of monologues; that we would spend our evenings making flower pictures out of toilet rolls, or watching whole series from their inception. I’ve watched so much Spooks that I’m practically MI5.

Three months ago, I would have assumed that the word ‘furlough’ was a latin verb in need of conjugation – fur-lough, fur-lass, fur-lat – not a written instruction to cross everything out of the diary and cease checking one’s work e-mail for an indeterminable period.

We’ve talked a lot in this series about supporting our young members, holding them in mind and making our programmes as accessible as possible, be it online, via the post. But what about ourselves?

I’m done with starting e-mails ‘hope you are doing ok at this strange time’ – I put this into my e-mail signature when lockdown began, but then changed it a couple of weeks in as I permanently hope that everyone is ok, at all times. The current situation has impacted everyone in different ways – whether it’s a change to routine, a lack of work, the onset of this new ‘exercise’ thing (I don’t think it’ll catch on); we must look after ourselves.

There’s an old adage about us being human beings; whatever your theology, we are not human doings or human thinkings. And in order to be, we need to focus on being, not doing or thinking. Right now, it’s very easy to fill every available moment with doing, even if it’s things you don’t usually do, like crochet, or brushing your hair; our thoughts are severely impacted at this time – what if this… what if that…. what if my employer doesn’t want me back… what if The Archers remains a series of monologues forever (although I must say that the new Sunday Omnibus accordion arrangement of the theme tune is spectacular and worth a listen – just switch on at 10am, then off, then on again at 11am).

Worrying doesn’t solve a lot, but we can give ourselves a break by just being. Try it.

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