It’s been almost a month since we all went into quarantine. We’re struggling to get basic supplies, stay indoors and most importantly, stay sane. 

However, social media seems to be in a constant state of frenzied productivity. Everyone is in a race to put up pictures of their banana bread, enhance skills or post 15 workout videos. 

On the other hand, there are those of us who are finding it difficult to step out of bed and take a shower. Or even wash dishes after cooking a basic, non-Instagrammable meal. And that is completely OK

The rush, the pressure being chocked down our throats, to be productive while being in a lockdown is frankly suffocating. All of us are equipped to deal with a pandemic in a different way, some of us just want to slow down and be bored. Because we haven’t been bored in so long! 

This isn’t a rat race, you don’t have to come out of this pandemic more skilled than you were before. You have to come out safe, and healthy, both mentally and physically. And this spread of toxic positivity and motivational posters on social media is definitely hindering with the latter. 

Especially if you are struggling with a mental illness like anxiety or depression, which is bound to be triggered at a time like this. Your priority is to take care of yourself instead of showing people how well you’re dealing with this ‘time off.’ 

Remember, there are no rules in quarantine. You’ve just got to do what you need to, to get by. 

For some people, this involves cooking and for some it’s cleaning. For a few it is a distraction, like learning how to play the guitar or a new language. However, if your way of coping is watching your favourite TV show or reading or even sleeping, you do you. 

In a Facebook post, trauma psychologist, Alaa Hijazi spoke about how we are going through something so much bigger than us. 

People are trying to survive poverty, fear, retriggering of trauma, retriggering of other mental health difficulties. Yet, someone has the nerve to accuse someone of lack of discipline for not learning a new skill, and by a yoga teacher!

-Alaa Hijazi

People are loosing jobs, livelihoods are being destroyed and in this time of profound grief, we can’t all be expected to do something new and productive. 

These unprecedented circumstances have put us all at a loss of words and clarity. We’re all just trying to get our shit together and this isn’t a race, to see who can bake the best bread and cook the most elaborate meal. 

The threat is so much bigger than us, and we’re all going to deal with this in the best way we can.