COVID-19 and Boredom


Welcome back or welcome to Adventures at Franklin. Today I cover a bit about the current situation and boredom, but first A LOT has happened since my last post. Here is a brief recap.

At Franklin, in-person classes initially suspended until March 29th, now extended to April 19th. Online classes will start on March 23rd. The dining hall remains open, with a cap on number of people who can enter. More information found here: https://www.fus.edu/services/health/coronavirus-information-and-updates

In Switzerland, the government has instituted a nationwide ban (until April 19) on all private and public events. Shops, restaurants, entertainment venues are closed. Grocery stores, pharmacies and gas stations remain open. People may not congregate in groups of 5 or more (violations result in a 100 CHF fine). More information about the situation in Switzerland: 

I’m not a specialist or an epidemiologist, so I don’t want to write too much about specifics on the virus and the situation in the world. However, I did want to share 2 brief general thoughts. First, an interesting quote I heard this week: linear solutions almost never tackle exponential problems. Some may see these measures as an overreaction, but these new regulations are meant to provide time. The virus has outpaced the medical literature up to now, so if there is more time, then we can provide more insight about the uncertainties. It takes time to manifest symptoms, so we do not know who is infected right away. Hopefully through this pause and isolation period, we will learn who is truly infected and our finite medical resources can be efficiently allocated. Finally, the virus is growing exponentially, so social distancing/self-isolating ourselves can limit the growth and relief the stress on medical services. 

In an ideal scenario, we can look back in a few months and say that we overreacted. Right now, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Secondly, be cautious and cognizant, but do not panic. Don’t go to a hospital if you’re not extremely sick. Medical resources, doctors and nurses are finite. Don’t panic buy everything from the store. We don’t need a food or toilet paper shortage to worry about as well. Follow the guidelines, but do not panic.

Although the situation continues to change every day, one apparent thing is that our daily routines will have to change to some extent. For some, staying inside means more free time, and that means possible boredom. Boredom has always fascinated me. Did you know there’s 5 types of boredom? The Springboard Center provides an overview: https://www.springboardcenter.org/five-kinds-of-boredom/
For the sake of simplicity, I’ll stick to type 1, indifferent boredom, where you feel relatively relaxed and calm. This type of boredom can be positive, as you can find creative things to do with the extra free time. Funnily enough, I’ve already written a post about “things to do during the long weekend”, in which many of my suggestions still apply. We can still exercise (indoors), call friends/family, do chores, get some work done, catch up on sleep, watch things online, spend time on hobbies (indoors). Read more about these suggestions here: http://adventuresatfranklin.fus.edu/2020/02/10-things-to-do-during-long-weekends-at.html

That’s already 7 suggestions, but I do have one more: learn something new and or get a new hobby. Imagine if this pandemic and quarantine occurred a decade ago, or 2 decades ago. We would have been worse off. Nowadays, we have access to news, entertainment, and communication all within a few simple swipes and clicks. Use that technology to learn something new! You can learn just about anything from videos on YouTube. You can find articles and posts about how to do or make things from a simple google search. Learning new things or finding new hobbies is a great way to stay busy! Also, this pandemic has put life on hold for a bit, but when life does hopefully resume, wouldn’t it be nice having a new skill or skills to your repertoire? I certainly think so.  

Stay safe, stay healthy, and see you in my next post :) 

A presto,
Asa

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