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Really, really remote

By Eric Larson

For some, this pandemic, quarantined, work-from-home, remote life is a nice break from the daily grind, but I am not into it. I. Miss. People. 

I know there are others out there who feel my pain. My wife is an essential worker, so she’s gone before I wake up. My two kids are at college, so they’re not here to entertain me either. I think the family was sensing my loneliness because they surprised me with our pup, Murphy, for Christmas. 

Sure, I’m an extrovert and perhaps this new normal is harder on us than the introverts, but I don’t think it’s just extroverts who are struggling with working from home. It’s a difficult time, and we’re doing what we should be doing to survive this pandemic, but don’t forget to take care of your mental health. I’m not a doctor, or a medical expert but these are things I do, that are helping me get through this time.

1. Buy a puppy

Okay, okay I’m kidding. But also not really. Having Murphy around to train, feed, snuggle with, keep alive, talk to and play with has helped me get through the days. 

2. Take a walk

If you have a new dog, you HAVE to take walks. But okay, that’s enough with the dog already. Dog or no dog, walks are great. For us Minnesotans, that means bundling up a bit more this time of year. But it’s worth it. Plus, Vitamin D and all. 

3. Get together safely

Recently, I’ve been called to work with a client on-site to help with a project. It has been beneficial on so many levels. Being able to work and converse in person not only helps the project move swiftly, but it has brought me back to life! We must execute these events safely, but I encourage you to see people when you can, and how you can. 

4. Be easy on yourself

We’re all doing the best we can right now. It’s ok to lose our patience, get frustrated, miss people and be upset that we’re having to go through this at all. It’s ok. 

Are there other things any of you are doing to battle the daytime loneliness? I’d love to hear more ideas about how you all are getting through this. I’m here if anyone wants to talk, clearly.