Going back a few decades, before the internet, we all had busy lives.
We worked fulltime jobs, pulled all-nighters as students, shuttled our kids to their music lessons and sports games every day, and generally kept as busy as possible.
Then the internet arrived. At first it was like a tiny trickle of water. We’d visit an occasional website, maybe join a chat room, and check our emails about once a week. But this trickle of water gradually turned into a slow flood, as more and more people began using the world wide web. I vividly remember a colleague saying in the 1990s, “It’s almost becoming irresponsible not to check our email at least every few days.”
Then social media came along, and the floodgates opened. We spend hours upon hours online each day, and I’m beginning to think it’s in the Starbucks job description that the barristas have to quickly take their phones out of their pockets to glance at TikTok during the 5 seconds it takes to steam a latte!
This is all fine, except….
Except for the fact that our “internet time” was piled upon our already-bursting-to-the-max pre-internet busy lives.
So… this means that most of us ended up leading double schedules for a decade or two. All day and all night. We were stressed and stretched to the point of breaking.
That was pre-Covid.
Over the past 15 months, our world has been turned upside-down. Gigs were cancelled, our in-person social interaction practically stopped, and many people lost their jobs and loved ones. (One of my relatives died from Covid, and her husband, who is a doctor, was powerless to save her.)
As terrible as the last year has been, it’s forced us to slow down. The internet thankfully kept us in touch with one another, and most in-person stuff ceased. We began to get a good night’s sleep again, and intensely noticed the change of seasons.
Now, as we gradually (and hopefully) move into a post-Covid world, I’ve seen that people don’t want to give up the internet, yet they don’t want to live overly-busy lives again. We’re asking ourselves, “How can we re-integrate into the world again” without returning to the craziness that we didn’t even notice at the time?
Here’s one example: Health permitting, people all over the world have been playing more piano that in decades. It’s been extraordinary!
Let’s keep the good habits that have come about over the past year, as we get rid of this dreadful pandemic and all the suffering it’s brought. Let’s keep making time to relax and pursue the things that make us happy. The things that give our lives meaning. Our families, our friends, our passions, and ourselves.
Thank you for being here and inspiring me every day!
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