A Change in my Brain

I’ve mentioned a few times on here about my struggle with focusing on a book. There are several other changes in the way I occupy my mind during these times. Here are some ways the way I spend my time has changed recently(besides the obvious part that I spend all of my time in my house.

Reading – I am still reading. I actually finished a book over the weekend. It just takes me a lot longer to finish a book these days. I also find myself skimming the books more. I just can’t get absorbed in a book the way I used to. It’s possible this started before the quarantine as my reading had already slowed. This has just made it worse. It’s hard to get absorbed in a book when I have trouble getting my mind off of the stress and depression of the current situation. Maybe I should go back to one of my favorite books and see how that goes.

TV – I have watched a lot of TV since we’ve all been at home. The biggest issue here is that we don’t all watch the same shows. I need to find more shows to watch alone and we need to find more shows that all of us want to watch. My DVR is still almost full because there are a ton of shows that just me and my wife watch and we never have time to watch them now. I have noticed that I prefer shows that are lighter now and need less focus. We are watching some old seasons of Survivor. It’s fun watching them again with my daughter and they are easy to watch without thinking. I watch the news less because the last thing I need is more of my mind on the pandemic. I haven’t watched John Oliver the last three weeks for the same reason. We are watching shows like Community because they are fun and light and that’s what we need right now.

Sleeping – My sleep pattern is pretty much the same. I wake up too early every day and that leads to me being sleepy earlier than everyone else. Sometimes I try to stay in the room while others are watching TV late and sleep on the couch for a while. Others seem to stay up much later now. I’m too old for that.

Movies – We do occasionally watch a movie, but I think movies are suffering the same as books. It’s easier to focus on a short TV show than a long movie,  A nice, short comedy like Stuber is preferable over a long, dramatic movie right now. I think I need to watch some of my sports movies I love like Glory Road and Remember the Titans.

Walking – I take the dog for a walk every day the weather cooperates. Before all of this, I would sometimes be lazy and skip walks. Now it takes major rain to stop me from going on the walk I did take a lazy day yesterday and used the weather as an excuse. I regretted it at the end of the day.

Social Media – I’ve unfollowed people on both Twitter and Facebook recently because I couldn’t deal with constant rants on either side of the issues. I don’t feel like I post as much as I used to. I might be wrong about that. I try not to look at it as much, but it is a habit that is hard to break. You can find out a lot about people based on what they say during a crisis. Sometimes that is not a good thing.

It might take a while for me to get back to normal after this. My reading might take a while. I think work stress and Depression had already made it hard to focus on reading and since I will continue to work it won’t go away at the end of the crisis. It will just be more because of my personal crisis, not a worldwide one. I need to learn to turn my brain off and stop dwelling on the bad. I have never been able to do that so you can imagine what it’s like during times like these. Turning off the news has helped. Avoiding certain people on social media has helped.  Focusing on positives and hope has helped. I am a work in progress.