Greetings everyone out there.
Can you believe it’s only June? Or, can you believe it’s June already?
I’m sure at least some of you feel like me. The year is already half over, but it feels like I’ve lived 1 million years in the past few months. It’s really amazing to believe where we are now.
I listened to an absolutely fabulous podcast that gave a little overview of the world upheaval that we’ve seen so far, and it was incredibly interesting to take a step back and truly appreciate how things have changed on this little planet we call Earth. The extraordinary now seems commonplace, and if you took time to reflect, could you imagine the type of change that we’ve seen so far? At the beginning of the year, would you have guessed that, within 3 month, governments around the world would be releasing the biggest aid package’s in human history, shutting down international travel, and calling for an indefinite moratorium for work?
If you called it, then I want to hire you as my personal advisor! All kidding aside, in the midst of this incredible upheaval, it’s important to take a step back and breath!
Amazingly, there are positives to this situation: namely, more free time! However, in the current climate, it’s a bit unrealistic to assume that you’ll be able to be 100% productive every single second. Of course, working from home can open up opportunities to study, but you need time to breath!
By that, I mean that you need time to relax, and process what is going on. At the moment, I think there’s too much being made of ‘seizing’ this opportunity. With everyone locked down around the world, it seems that people are becoming obsessed with self-improvement and exiting this situation as a ‘better person’ than they were before.
On the face of it, this doesn’t sound unreasonable. Everyone wants to improve themselves, me included! However, it’s important to understand why you’re improving. Don’t think that you have to become a ‘better person’, just because of all the videos you see of people learning how to juggle tigers, or ride unicycles on their head. We all have to adjust to this crisis in our own way, and you shouldn’t strive to improve yourself because you feel inadequate, or want to compare yourself with anyone else. Instead, the motivation of self-improvement should first and foremost come from within.
At first, I thought that this lockdown would be a wonderful way to practice Japanese. Well, it turns out that it just made me miss Japan more! So, I modified my goals. Of course, I still try and study Japanese whenever I can. However, I also make time for other things that help me get through this time, like practicing guitar and just plain old sitting around doing nothing and listening to music! More than anything, I’m just focusing on my overall wellbeing during the current lockdown situation.
And of course, coping mechanisms will always differ between people. I think language and learning is one of the best ways to escape and use your time, but it’s far from the only one. Personally, I love my job and teaching English! For me, that has been one of the absolute best ways of taking my mind off not being able to return to Japan. While learning Japanese sometimes makes me miss Japan, instructing Japanese students, and hearing their own stories and watching them grow with English has the opposite effect. It further grows my appreciation for Japan and its people, and makes me excited to return, more than impatient.
I can’t wait to see you all on Fruitful English. We can help each other get through this!
座右の名”The grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love and something to hope for.”