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Let's Self-Isolate Like Shakespeare!

Welcome to The 5-Minute Recharge with one quote, three ideas, and a 5-minute recharge challenge to supercharge your wellness during turbulent times.


“I think we could all benefit from painting and dancing and singing.”― New York Times book critic Parul Sehgal

Self-isolating Sicilians sing from their balconies in a beautiful serenade of shared humanity


#1 TWO PERFECT PODCASTS TO HELP YOU PERSEVERE IN A PANDEMIC Listening to, watching or scrolling through endless news about the coronavirus pandemic can stress you out and be bad for your health. (The 5-Minute Recharge recommends selecting one trusted source for daily news and putting time limits on your exposure.) Here are two podcast episodes that can help you cope with anxious feelings (or the flip side of anxiety which is denial) that may have arisen. If you lean toward spiritual approaches, Tim Ferriss interviewed meditation teacher and former Buddhist monk Jack Kornfield who advises us to hold all we're worried about with tender compassion and not be squeamish about letting things go and shifting to calm. The 10 Percent Happier podcast has a special episode with Dr. Luana Marques, an anxiety specialist from Harvard, and meditation teacher Jay Michaelson that has lots of practical tips, including meditating on the breath, mindful hand washing, and if you're caught in a catastrophic spiral, Dr. Marques suggests holding two ice cubes in your hand to cool down your overheated mind.

“We have the opportunity, even in difficult times, to let our spirit shine.” ― Jack Kornfield

#2 SOCIAL DISTANCING DOESN'T MEAN SOCIAL ISOLATION Lynne had the opportunity this week to enjoy a Virtual Happy Hour (actually two virtual happy hours) with Acts of Friendship co-authors Deb Mangolt and Julie Smethurst. Lynne, Deb and Julie are currently working on an e-book with acts of friendship you can do with your friends over video conference that will be available in time for next week's newsletter. We need our friends now more than ever to help us cope, share a laugh, and boost our immunity.

“To compensate for the reduction in in-person social interaction, we must ramp up our virtual communication and ensure we are not losing touch with friends and family.”– Vivek Murthy 

#3 PROCRASTINATORS HAVE EXTREMELY TIDY HOMES Procrastinators aren't lazy: they just have trouble dealing with the unpleasant emotions that they associate with certain items on their to-do lists. According to Fuchsia Sirois, a UK psychologist who studies procrastination, a task may elicit feelings of insecurity, incompetence, or fear of failure. Even Margaret Atwood, an author with a long list of bestsellers to her name, calls herself a master procrastinator. Dealing with procrastination can lower stress levels and improve sleep, and it all starts with being a little kinder to yourself. Learn how Margaret Atwood tackled her procrastination, and get proven tips to boost your own productivity in this WorkLife podcast with "pre-crastinator" and organizational psychologist, Adam Grant.

“I've been busy lately...”– A Louisiana driver wins the Procrastinator-of-the-Year award for this excuse when he was pulled over for license plate tags that expired in 1997


The Fast Five

1. Could there be a more perfect activity to do while at home than take Yale's free on-line happiness course?

2. The psychology of panic buying

3. Jill Bolte Taylor, the neuroscientist who observed her own massive stroke with the curiosity of a scientist, has one word of wellness advice

4. How Serena Williams recharges

5 Gloria Gaynor fights the coronavirus

*********************************** YOUR 5-MINUTE RECHARGE CHALLENGE


“Tis the times' plague, when madmen lead the blind.”– from Shakespeare's King Lear

Did you know that in 1606, while Shakespeare was under quarantine as bubonic plague gripped London, he wrote King Lear...and Antony and Cleopatra...and Macbeth?

Although meditation will help you deal with anxiety in the moment, reframing self-isolation as an opportunity to create will give you the special kind of lingering contentment that comes from being in the flow state of creation. Have you ever wanted to write, to draw, or to create music?

Your 5-Minute challenge for this week is simply to take five minutes to brainstorm all the projects that have been bouncing around the back of your mind, but never found their way into your life, and once you have your list, to dive in. (If you hesitate, please revisit Idea #3 on dealing with procrastination)

Hey, working on your very own King Lear sure beats a Contagion-Outbreak double feature.

“Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.” ― Twyla Tharp

Wishing you a calm, safe and steady week ahead,

Lynne & Addie

If you have a friend who could use a positive charge, please share our newsletter...consider it an Act of Friendship!

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