Some adulting realizations I think we can all get behind
Look, I know that the world seems to be a really shitty place right now, what with politicians being shady (not to mention downright discriminatory) and ordinary citizens screaming at each other over social media and people suffering; I understand—but that’s not the only thing we can take away from this experience.
So for the sake of looking at the arguably bigger picture or some silver lining, here are some adulting realizations I’ve had over the past few weeks:
It is not about me, but it is also about me
I’ve heard a lot of talk about privilege and people feeling awful for being okay while fellow countrymen are without work, without pay and with barely any type of aid. Please do not get me wrong; I feel the same guilt—but I’ve learned not to be apologetic for the life I was born into. I will help when I can and as much as I can, but I’m not sorry for putting my family first. And while we’re at it, I will not apologize for shutting off social media at a time when being up-to-date is necessary if my mental health just cannot take any more of this. It. Everything.
It’s not just about me and my circle, but we have to look out for ourselves, too. You can’t lend a hand when it means cutting yours off.
The ability to adapt is essential
We all got so used to technology being the only shift of change that we’ve forgotten how to adapt to other stimuli. If the last few weeks have challenged us to do anything at all, it is to adapt. And while yes, I am talking about the businesses that have had to shift their services and priorities, I am also talking about our capacity to keep ourselves entertained and productive when and if possible. I’m talking about how we can adapt to our government’s mandates, the change in work and personal demands, and accepting that there is only so much we can do during certain situations. I know it’s a hard pill to swallow sometimes, but we cannot control everything.
To include in daily to-do list: A self-check
I know I just gave a whole spiel about the necessity of adapting to situations, but there is no shame in needing a break once in a while. Don’t be afraid to clock out, to meditate, to do a little introspection. Check in on yourself once in a while and do what’s necessary to recharge.
A little kindness goes a long way
And when you’re done checking in on yourself, check in on your friends, family and colleagues, too—hell, ask your delivery guy how he’s holding up. These times are hard on everyone and sometimes being someone’s outlet is the best help you can give them. So send that message, schedule that Zoom call, say those words.
We are all capable of more
For everyone that stood up, spoke up, donated, raised money, shared good news, intelligently critiqued the government—aren’t you a little proud of yourself for doing more? Don’t lose that sense of community. And for the private institutions that gave more in order to make life a little more livable for everyone, thank you—but please don’t forget that there are always people in need. If you have the capacity to treat your employees better, do it.
We’re all capable of more than what we were giving two months ago. Is there a point to ending things here?
All this shit—like most things—can be a learning experience. And we’re to prepare ourselves for a dip in the economy, at least we can come out of it with some adulting realizations that we can put into practice. There’s always a brighter side to things, right? We just need to find it.
Art Matthew Ian Fetalver