Isolation Burnout (Returning to normal)
I was reading an article the other day by Caroline Zielinaski titled
“Coronavirus ‘Iso burnout’ won’t just fade as restrictions ease.”
She was talking about anxiety that comes from coming out of lockdown isolation as restrictions ease. Stress, uncertainty and depression caused by months of isolation burnout has certainly taken a big toll on many of us. So you’d think that we would be hanging out to socialise big time with friends and family.
But some of us have got quite use to living the quiet life. In fact, at some level, they quite like it. So getting out in the big bad world full of queues, busy shops, heavy traffic and stressful workplaces is a real negative jolt for them.
All of this got me thinking about how we felt spending 2 months being in nature hiking the Bibbulmun Track from Perth to Albany. Our daily routine was in tune with the rhythm of nature. Hiking during the day, going to sleep with the birds, waking up with birds and repeating the process all over again. Life on the track was so simple.
In fact we got into such a natural rhythm that when we walked into a small town, it felt like entering a big city. Even seeing a car as we crossed a country road was a jolt to the system.
Although we ultimately enjoyed our couple days of recovery in towns, by the end we couldn’t wait to be back on the trail again. Other hikers that have finished the 1000km track in Albany have found civilisation so daunting, they turned around and immediately started walking back to Perth.
Today, I took a bunch of eager members of my mindfulness photography group on a walk photographing birds at Herdsman Lake. It was so peaceful, with the sound birdsong filling the air in warm sunshine. Two hours later I found myself buying a doona at Kmart full of social distancing shoppers . I don’t like shopping like this at the best of times, but I didn’t mind this time. In fact I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing.
It was all down to that couple hours in nature and sunshine mixing with like minded photographers. It set me up for the shopping onslaught ahead. Feel free to join our Facebook group.
Perhaps that is the answer to iso burnout. Don’t throw yourself into the mayhem of post COVID busy life straight away. Ease into it the best you can and mix it up with a bit of sunshine and nature.