Adaptation. It's a skill set we've all been forced to hone, like it or not.
At a recent ZOOM meeting, one of my teaching colleagues shared how her Grad team was learning to "turn on a dime" as they plan Grad 2021. I can't help comparing it to our own Fall Conference for this year. The Executive committee is in the throes of planning for a live event in Edmonton, but we know we may also need to 'turn on a dime', as it were, and go virtual once again for 2021.
I've done a pirouette or two in regard to my personal writing as well. Over the years I've adapted to doing most marketing online, but I did enjoy the odd personal appearance at bookstores and libraries and tried to hit a few seasonal craft sales and the like. These were never huge moneymakers, but they did give me something to share online afterward. I also enjoyed the spur of the moment conversations with passers-by. This cannot be duplicated online.
In some ways, doing everything virtually is a relief. I have a ready-made excuse not to 'bother' going out. I wonder if I've adapted so 'well' to staying home that I'm becoming a hermit. How convenient it is to conduct all of my business from the comfort of my own home. There are so many advantages to technology. No more traveling. No wasted time coming and going. How wonderful that InScribe's executive can meet regularly to discuss business face-to-face - all because of technology.
But I am getting lazy, too. Complacent. How easy it is to watch my pastor's sermon online rather than have to brave the cold. We meet for Bible study and prayer meetings on ZOOM, but are we really getting the same heartfelt connection that we do when face-to-face? A colleague shared jokingly that the most used phrase in 2020 was, "You're on mute." I had to laugh. It is so true. Despite our best efforts, the ebb and flow of natural conversation aren't quite the same.
Still, we're doing our best. All of us have had to turn on a dime to some degree. Some people are managing better than others. For the most part, I like my own company, which is a good thing since my husband works away, so lives in a camp two-thirds of the time. I have occasional visits from my children and grandchildren who have remained in my bubble, but other than that it is mostly just the three of us - me, myself and I.
Early on in this Covid crisis, I embraced some advice I saw somewhere that keeping a schedule helps keep one's mental health stable. I knew this to be true ever since retiring from teaching public school. If I let myself just 'go with the flow' every day, I soon spiral into lethargy - and watching too my Netflix! So, I try to stick to a routine as much as possible, building in housework, 'work 'work, writing, and even hobbies. A routine keeps me sane and helps me feel like I'm still accomplishing my goals. As long as it doesn't become rigid and its own source of stress, routine has been my best and biggest adaptation.
In some ways, I'm still turning on a dime, but hopefully, I'm doing it gracefully.
Tracy Krauss writes - and enjoys life - in northern BC. She is currently serving as inScribe's president. Visit her website for more - fiction on the edge without crossing the line -