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"Il Dolce Far Niente": Lockdown 2.1

Yep, not lockdown 2.0 anymore - another digit has been added. The recent heavier restrictions have felt like it’s yet another round of lockdown, and yet another kick in the guts. I remember earlier this year when we were told we couldn’t go out. Restaurants, bars and pubs were closed, we couldn’t have friends around etc. In my head I was obviously sad I couldn't see my mates and devastated that my social life suddenly didn’t exist, but I was also weirdly excited. The thought of not having to keep on top of my plans and carry my old school diary around everywhere felt somewhat liberating. It wasn’t hard for me to see it as a bit of a ‘mental holiday’. Plus, I moved in with the Morrison’s, so I wasn’t going to be without entertainment. I instantly started to think of things that I could do to be productive and better myself during this ‘extra’ time we had. The shitty old Officeworks diary started to fill up with daily mundane reminders like ‘go for 3km walk’, ‘write Yoga lessons’, ‘research study options'. They weren't really plans as such, but they were little baby goals I had decided to set to make me feel like I was being productive. I love the satisfaction of having a to-do list, and putting a big giant tick next to my tasks as I go. It's like a personal pat on the back - 'Look! Just LOOK what I did today. Gee, I'm such a thriving adult!' But I slowly began to deflate, and my motivation hit an all-time low. Exacerbated moreso by the fact that it seemed everywhere I looked on social media, people were metaphorically ticking things off their to-do list... I wasn't, and felt lazy as a result. Why couldn't I tick my goals off? Why am I failing at this whole productivity thing? And why did it bother me so much that I wasn't ticking off my list? Early on I think a lot of people had similar ideas. This is such a great time to focus on those rainy day projects! But be that as it may, there also dwells a cloud of expectation. 'I should do this', becomes 'I need to do this otherwise I'll be a failure, and I won't have utilised my time enough in lockdown'. Sound familiar? I recently watched Eat Pray Love for the first time ever. I know, a Yoga teacher having just been to Bali to complete her training has never seen Eat Pray Love? WHAT?! Anyway, there is a saying Julia Roberts‘ character learns when she's galivanting her way around Italy which has stuck with me. "Il dolce far niente", and it translates to 'the sweetness of doing nothing'. It is now my phone wallpaper. Yep, seriously. I know in the context of the scene she is referring to enjoying her time overseas, and being in the present moment when on vacation. But I strongly believe this saying should apply to now as well. We're not on vacation, far from it. We're going through a huge once-in-a-lifetime event, where we are all affected. So why on earth, do we feel the need to put any extra pressure on ourselves to succeed right now? Isn't just dealing with a friggin pandemic enough?! We can't change the current situation; we have to stick it out. Follow the rules, stay at home, wear a mask, and chat to your friends and family. Start or finish a project that you want to, sure. But I urge you not to let that become a negative pressure. Ask yourself if it's something you should/want to do, rather than if you'll consider yourself a failure if you don't do it. I can tell you right now, my home is filled with unfinished projects. But it's not going to own me and bring me down if I don't finish it. I can acknowledge that these projects are not important enough to have a negative effect on my mental well-being. In times of uncertainty, anxiety, pressure and the unknown, sometimes the sweetness of doing nothing, can be everything you need.

- Kate Holmesby, Yoga Instructor

Kate is available for private online sessions - please contact for prices

Phone: 0423 756 747

Instagram: kateholmesby

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