Living in the times of social distancing: Why the hyper bored must revisit memories right now
The global pandemic has devalued our present and definitely our future. The idea of freedom, touch, work, leisure, sharing, caring and mattering has changed across the globe and how. Every piece of information is causing anxiety and everyday has become a fight to finish. “Take each day at a time”, is the most ‘worthwhile’ piece of advice that many of us are getting from peers and workspaces but how does one do that?
The everyday jargon of chores and making the day count is tough as it is as you are not supposed to take a peek out of the futuristic window to give yourself hope and acquire inspiration of any kind. The extroverts are suffering and the introverts are suffering wondering about the change of roles and lifestyle. The fear of living in a Utopian space is not acceptable to many but it is not a choice anymore. All the issues that we were already battling at many fronts like mental health, physical health, productivity, poor sleep, lack of interest, in general, have hit us in full capacity and there is nothing one can do about it. The idea of boredom has also changed. From the cracked walls of a super busy lifestyle, boredom came in like light and began rewiring the lives we live or we think we are living. Back in the day which is like a couple of months ago, people prayed for it, pined for it. They wanted to afford the luxury of getting bored but now the wish has somewhat come true but it’s come for a price.
Danish writer, Søren Aabye Kierkegaard once wrote, “Since boredom advances and boredom is the root of all evil, no wonder, then, that the world goes backwards, that evil spreads. This can be traced back to the very beginning of the world. The gods were bored; therefore they created human beings.” Many writers and philosophers like Albert Camus, Friedrich Nietzsche, Arthur Schopenhauer, Saul Bellow and Émile Zola among others in the past shared their ideas of boredom and talked about how it means different things to different people. Hasn’t boredom always challenged the idea of a perfect life and a perfect world that we are living in without even knowing what actually bores us? This not the first pandemic that has hit the world in so many ways.
The hyper bored generation has been created successfully and this mental transit has been anything but easy. The virtual, life of the future is not fascinating anymore. The constant scrolling on smartphones and tablets is not fun anymore. Living a multi-purpose active life within four walls is new life but not that bad as it is made out to be. Yes, taking a stroll our seems like a distant dream right now but it is not that bad. What is bad is the constant state of fear that is brewing on the outside as well as the inside. The conversations virtual or vocal is shifting to what we were rather than what is going to be.
The dependence on memory is the call of the hour. The happier times where simplicity even though not valued much was a cherishable experience. To make our lives easier, aren’t we all going down memory lane to gather those simpler skills that our previous generations crafted and lived? While one can, rather than jumping into the pool of hashtagged challenges, why not reflect upon the past, open those memory boxes and see what could have been done differently? Not to change the future or even reshaping the present, but just to relive some simpler times, noticing those little gestures that changed your life without one even realising it and to also reckon ways to live in a certain livable way.
While we rejoiced the nuclear family set-ups, aren’t we missing the joys of living in a joint family household? The aspect of loneliness, the sense of desire, the presence of absence, the certainty of the uncertain change is stolen and returned to us at the same time. The idea of touch will never be the same. Witnessing ourselves as to what we were and what we are turning into can only be bridged by those many memory boxes that will remind us of the journey that hasn’t ended. Not as of now. This shall too pass but do wonder about what you want to keep for the future.