#2 of 10 helpful, constructive, nurturing ideas.


As the pandemic began taking over the news and then our news feeds on social media, and then our lives and behaviors, and maybe economic futures and social relations, the part of me that wants to be part of constructive solutions, rather than fear and doomsday, stepped in. I won’t lecture at you “do this.”  I will say what I am doing, in the hopes that it could inspire you.

I pay attention to the soundtrack of my day.

I listen to great music. Inspiring podcasts. Learn a new language. Instead of news.  Or just silence. I do hours and hours of silence.
What news do I really need? “Stay in please” or “collect rags because there is no more toilet paper on the planet and anyway that wasn’t so sustainable”?

Do I really need to know, vitally and in a way that makes a difference to my behavior, How many cases or Coronavirus have been tested and diagnosed in the region? Does it help to hear sad stories about people whose livelihoods have collapsed? Social comparison is not helpful at this time. To help and volunteer, there are specific sites for that. These opportunities tend not to be highlighted in the regular news.

Some internet platforms, or youtube channels, are able to play continuous gorgeous music. I seek these out. Also, I pull out my CDs and go old-school and listen to an album as the artists intended.

Something out of Canada I found that I have enjoyed. https://calmradio.com/en/ I am partial to “Light Classical” and “Coffee house” and “Folk today.”

And a tip from one of my graduate students:
https://coffitivity.com You can choose different kinds of bustling public-space (third space) sounds, and for those of us completely isolated from other human beings, such buzz can be pure sweetness.

A 2013 article from scholars  Jiang et al indicates that it’s important people can choose which music they most prefer for stress reduction.