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Practicing Stillness During Quarantine

Practicing Stillness During Quarantine

Maansi Pandya

These are strange times we’re living in. Literally everyone I know is feeling the effects of COVID-19. The world just feels…different. As someone who definitely leans more introvert, you’d think I’d be over the moon at the thought of being forced to stay home all day, but nope. I am aching for all this to be over.

Usually in a time of crisis, we’re encouraged to be among people and carry on our lives as normal. But now everything we would typically do for comfort, hang out with friends, go to the movies, work at a coffee shop and even attend small social gatherings, has been shut down indefinitely. It’s hard. If you’re feeling stressed, please know you are not alone. That discomfort and sadness you’re feeling at the sudden loss of normalcy is very real. We are in this together.

With the world so tense and uncertain, I’ve been doing the best thing I can for the moment: Practicing stillness. I’ve seen that word come up a lot recently, especially on Instagram. Maybe some of you can relate, but for the past several years life has been at full speed. I’ve been working constantly and just BUSY, both mentally and physically.

For the first time in years, I feel genuinely present in the moment, observing everything around me, being with my family and genuinely having time to do things I love. I’ve picked up books I’ve been meaning to read, Marie Kondo’d my room and done a lot of writing. All this, of course, on top of feeling sadness and a LOT of melancholy over the state of the world, at times wondering, is all this shit for real?

I’m not saying you need to use this time to start a business empire or even accomplish anything creative if you’re heart isn’t in it. But what I am saying is don’t feel guilty for simply using this time to experience life and do the things that light you up, because we all need that right now. I don’t care what that is. Alongside working (because I really love what I do), you can bet there’s going to be a TON of Playstation involved without an ounce of guilt.

Family: “Hey Maansi, how many hours of Legend of Zelda will you play?” Me: “Yes.”

Oh, and while you absolutely should stay home, please remember to take walks and get some sunshine (while keeping a safe distance and washing your hands for at least 20 seconds!). Fresh air is imperative, especially in times like these. Walk your dog, go for a run around your neighbourhood and stay safe.

Do the things that bring you joy, experience really living in the present and enjoy a break from the craziness of the world. Connect digitally with the people you love, because we’re all in this together!

I’ve been so amazed and inspired by the sense of togetherness I’ve seen in the entrepreneurship community. If you’re a business owner, you’ve probably felt the effects of this like so many of us have, and we are all trying to find ways to cope. It’s OK to feel whatever you’re feeling.

With that, here are a few things I’m going to do more of now that I have plenty of time. Some of these are BASIC but they bring me joy!

Binge Netflix

Confession: I have never seen Grey’s Anatomy. I know, WTF right?! If you think of any other shows I should watch, please help a girl out. OH have you guys tried that Netflix Party Chrome extension? It basically lets you watch Netflix with friends! A few of us gave it a try, it was dope. 10/10 would definitely recommend.

Do Yoga 

I promise you I signed up for a bunch of workouts on Classpass before all this nonsense, it’s not my fault they were cancelled! I was JUST starting to become a gym babe! But that’s why YouTube workouts are awesome 😉

Play Kingdom Hearts 3 on Playstation

So I played the first few Kingdom Hearts games when I was in elementary school and it’s been a solid 100 years since KH2 came out. I bought KH3 a few weeks ago (simpler times) but haven’t had any time to play. Friend, I’m about to start sooooo many side quests.


As a word nerd, you’d think I’d have carved out more time to actually read a book. With a long commute at my last 9-5 job, the only real time I had to read was on the train with my Kindle. But nothing beats the feeling of holding a real book and cozying up with a cat beside you and a cup of tea. There’s going to be a lot of that, for sure.

I wanted to leave you with this incredible quote I saw on Instagram. Hang in there, sisters. We will get through this together.

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