It’s OK Not To Be Productive by Maxine Morrey.
I’ve written before on the fact that there are both good and bad sides to social media when I released #NoFilter, and during these strange times that certainly hasn’t changed.
On the one hand, it’s lovely to be able to keep in touch with people who we now can’t see at all, as well as just feeling connected to others, especially if you’re self isolating. Even if we’re not the most sociable of people, we’re all still human and can feel that need to be part of something. It’s become a source of help for people trying to ensure both they and their children keep active with things like ‘PE with Joe Wicks’, as well as a source of instruction for people who have suddenly found they have a lot more time on their hands and fancy taking up a new craft such as knitting or sewing, but have no clue where to begin.
However, the flip side of this is that it has also provided a channel for those who aren’t feeling particularly productive to be feel even more challenged and insecure. When you’re being bombarded by a plethora of posts detailing all the things achieved by different people, it can be hard not to feel like you should be doing the same and that there’s something wrong with you because You Just Can’t. Newsflash! There is Nothing Wrong With You!
Just in case you didn’t catch that, I’m going to say it again. There is nothing wrong with you. Not in the slightest. Right now things are weird, and worrying and hard and strange and at times either lonely or overwhelming and sometimes both – this situation is like nothing we’ve ever experienced before. It’s a lot to deal with. And if you don’t feel like having a massive declutter, or making over your bedroom or your garden, that’s absolutely fine. There’s nothing in the rules that says we all have to come out of this proficient in Russian and at competition level in Flamenco dancing.
If the most you can achieve today, or any day, is to get out of bed, wash, clothe and feed yourself while binge watching Netflix, that is more than enough of an achievement because, honestly, just doing that some days feels like the biggest thing in the world. And you’ve done it!
If social media is making you feel pressure to be ‘doing something’, maybe unfollow or mute those accounts that are the worst offenders to your mind for the moment. You can always return to them, if you want, when a little normality returns. Or not. It’s up to you. It’s also up to you whether you take a break from social media completely or not. Only you can decide that because, as I said earlier, there can be some benefits. It is, like most things in life, all about finding the balance.
But whatever you decide, do not let anyone – and especially not yourself – judge you or shame you just because you haven’t created a perfect scale replica of the Taj Mahal from marzipan. Just do what you need to do to get through this. We are all different and we are all handling it in our own way. Behind those perfect sour dough loaves, and toned up bikini bodies may be a person sobbing because they can’t see their mum or their best mate, or their grandkids and filling their time is the only way they can cope. Remember, social media is carefully curated, so don’t get sucked in by the hype. The one thing you need to focus on is you, and doing what’s right, and what’s working, for you, not what someone else thinks you should be doing.
Most importantly , just be kind to yourself. It’s a tough time. Talk to yourself as you would a good friend. Be supportive to yourself and shrug off that burden of unnecessary expectation. Make yourself a big cuppa, grab the remote and get comfy. It’s ok.
Maxine’s latest novel My Year of Saying No is available now in ebook, audiobook and paperback. Get your copy today by clicking on the cover below.