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Something for yourself

Updated: Jan 19, 2023

Hi there!

My name’s Azriela and I’m a nerdy eighteen-year-old whose daily schedule took a huge hit by the COVID 19 pandemic. I think this happened to a lot of us teenagers and today, I want to talk to you about my experience. India is suffering from the second wave of COVID 19 and a third wave is supposed to hit during October. At this time, hope is scarce and for all you isolated minds, here’s a little food for thought.

The first eight months of lockdown were difficult for me. My schedule revolved around all of four activities. Eating, sleeping, binge-watching, studying and going out for a walk. It was like an endless loop. My sleep schedule was non-existent owing to the all-nighters I pulled every alternate day. I tried to fake joy over video calls and online classes but let’s be honest, I couldn’t do that forever.

After a while, I stopped eating properly, stopped communicating with my friends and lost all motivation to do my work. Being an extrovert, it was safe to say that isolation had gotten the better of me.

After the first six months, I realised that things weren’t going as planned. I had to do something to fix my mental health, my schedule and most importantly, I had to find a way to rekindle who I really was. I decided to have a little faith and speak to an adult I trusted. She didn’t give me a long list of what I could do or anything like that. But she did tell me to set time aside and do something for myself every day. Something I would enjoy, something that would take my mind off of the negativity and something safe to do during the pandemic.

I kid you not, it took me a month to figure out what I wanted to do. Having been a pianist all my life, I thought playing the piano would make me ‘happy’. But for some reason, that just made me sadder. I tried art and gave up after one look at what I had created. Finally, I settled on working out since I figured it would help me stay healthy both physically and mentally.

I began working out for around half an hour every day and over the course of a month, those thirty minutes became the favourite part of my day. I slowly began streamlining my days. My mind began to look at the positives around me, my grades slowly began climbing up the ladder and owing to the physical exhaustion, I began to sleep soundly as well. Who knew a simple workout routine could do so much?! But it did. It changed my outlook on life, the pandemic and everything that comes with it. Sometimes when you can’t change the situation, changing your perspective really helps!

Today, I still eat, sleep, binge-watch, study and go out for a walk but I also play the piano, write, sing, get unnaturally excited over stationery and dream of room décor. My final exams recently got cancelled and I’ve been living an extremely chilled out life. I have decent academic scores; a well-rounded record of extra-curricular activities and I’m going to be pursuing a triple major at one of the top universities in India. I’m in a good place, working out did it for me.

If you’re in a similar position, try this out! Set aside time and do something for yourself every day. I know it’s difficult since interest is very hard to find these days. But try it out. Who knows? Your current outlook on life could take a 180-degree turn!

To read about long term plans, be sure to read Pehal Kothari’s article in the 31st issue of The Teen Tribune’s weeklee newspaper.

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