COVID-19 Bringing Out The Creativity As Necessity
Dancing, Books, Cooking, Painting...Let's Get Creative!
It's Only Been A Month, But Look At The Ideas That Have Come From Staying At Home
I have definitely not been thrilled with the prospect of limiting my social contacts with people because I'm someone who spends a lot of time in public between running around with my kids, hitting the gym and teaching high school. I've found that, at least until emergency remote teaching began, I felt as though I was spinning my wheels a bit, trying to find ways to be productive.
With all that said, however, I have been seriously impressed with the creativity of the human spirit.
I realize that part of this creativity is borne out of survival. Businesses, for instance, are focusing on curbside pickup and if that business is a restaurant, it's doing everything it can to drive attention towards its take out and delivery services. Various gyms are offering virtual classes, including some martial arts facilities, and businesses that have been conducting paint nights are now offering that virtually as well. Runners who were slated to participate in races now have the option - more so than ever before - to join virtual races of pretty much any length. Tutoring services have also expanded their online capacity as well.
There are also creative means of raising funds or resources for those who might be in need as well. Craft breweries have started making their own sanitizer and several companies have come up with ways to create face shields and other resources that front line workers might need as they work to help those who might be struggling with COVID-19. Drag queens, who have definitely been hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis due to the closures of bars and clubs, are organizing their own fundraisers to help those queens for whom drag is their only source of income.
There are also creative ways in which people are working to pass the time as well. People are taking up exercise when they would not have considered doing that previously. Stores have noticed their flour and yeast supplies are dwindling fast because people who haven't done much baking previously are now igniting their inner Martha Stewart. Whether that is a function of survivalism or simply a creative way to pass the time is tough to say, but to be sure, people have been finding ways to fill the time that they may not have otherwise considered before.
I also find that kids are asking different questions than they would have otherwise done. My 11-yr-old daughter has expressed an interest in learning higher math after watching a calculus video explained at a Grade 5 level. My oldest daughter has done more baking than ever before, and she's actually considering starting a running regimen, which she hasn't really expressed an interest in previously. Younger kids are constructing window art and signs for both decoration and as a means of thanking front line workers.
I've also noticed that my own kids are cleaning their rooms without being asked, so I suspect the monotony of spending most of their day indoors is more than getting on their nerves.
It's interesting to see just how much people are attempting to expand their repertoire of things to do. There's one family doing cooking contests similar to what you see on the Food Network's show Chopped. Others are having regular homemade pizza nights and still others are rediscovering board games or a love of puzzles.
Sure, there are relaxed rules regarding screen times, in part because emergency remote schooling has gone completely online, for better or for worse, but there appears to be a desire for simpler times that was not as pronounced previously. There are people connecting in ways you would not have really seen last year because as a society, we have sort of been forced to slow down. This slowing down has, in many cases, forced us to reassess what we've been doing in recent years and to rediscover new ways of approaching life.
It's been refreshing, to say the least, and it's my hope that it is also teaching our kids to find healthier ways to occupy their time rather than sitting on tablets and playing games or watching videos all the time. We are rediscovering our creativity in a way that we may not have previously considered, and it's the spirit of human invention that has sparked that creativity again.
While I fervently hope we will be able to go back into the world and resume at least some of our "normal" activities sooner rather than later, I am curious to see where this creativity will go in the future.