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Turning isolation into rejuvenation


Rottnest Island, WA, is a holiday destination turned quarantine island in 2020. (Photo: April Austen)

Coronavirus has taken the world by storm. It was the pandemic we never expected and one we could never have imagined.


Many of us are sick of hearing and reading about it. And yet it controls every aspect of our lives right now.


Plans have been cancelled. Holidays, if not already postponed or cancelled, will be. And every possible gathering or social event you had imagined for 2020 has been shifted dramatically and without warning.


Is there even any point planning anything for this year, or should we just write it off as a trial and error? The latter is becoming the most likely option.


We have been restricted to our homes. Stuck inside the same four walls day in and day out. And the worst part is that we don’t know when this will all end.


For the extroverts, this is a living nightmare. For the introverts, it is heaven.


For RMIT University students trying to pass this year, it could be just what we needed.

Yes, being stuck in isolation can drive us mad. But if we simply change our perspective we have the chance to make the most of it.


There’s finally time to get to those books you’ve always been meaning to read. (Photo: April Austen)

So many of us end each day wishing we had more time. More time to exercise, read, cook nutritious meals and work on our craft in order to pursue our dreams.


We want the perfect day of being able to get tasks done, and in a way that allows us to still slow down and make the most of each day.


Since I started University, I’ve been in a constant cycle of classes, study, work, study, sleep and repeat. Not to mention the extra strain of a long-distance relationship and being away from my home city. For some, they can juggle this perfectly fine and still manage to reach their goals on the side of vamping up their portfolio.


But I, unfortunately, am about a year behind on updating my portfolio that I continuously told myself that “I would do tomorrow”. Which I clearly kept saying for 365 days, and counting.


So how do we make the most of 2020 from inside the walls of our houses? That’s where a new perspective is needed.


It may be a struggle to really see when we are going through the same old depressing unstructured day, on a never-ending cycle. But now is the time for us to accomplish certain goals we told ourselves two years ago that we would do.


Cafes will reopen, eventually. (Photo: Eliza Sears)

Now is the time to read a book, watch a certain movie, write for the love of it. Or maybe to start a blog, learn how to use that new camera or edit videos. Start an exercise routine.


Maybe it’s just about asking yourself each day, what the one thing is you wish you could do if you had the time. Just one thing.


It’s not too much to ask and it’s not too little.


Isolation can get the best of all of us. It can de-motivate us. It can take away hope. But then maybe your task for that day is to simply listen to yourself and breathe.


Sounds simple, and yet it isn’t, because so many of us forget to do just this.


Our house may feel like a prison cell and the sentence feels like it will never end, but the truth of the matter is that it will end.


We will come out of our houses and apartments. We will be back at uni and in the work field. And before we know it we’ll be sitting at our favourite brunch spot with our favourite people, talking about how much we missed our almond lattes with smashed avocado back when we were in isolation.


But when this is all over, we may be able to say that even through the loneliness and isolation we managed to come out recognising what we wanted in our lives.


Or maybe we will come out of this period and simply talk about all the things we would do if we had the time.

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