Updated: May 5, 2020
While we're collectively going through something we probably never expected to ever experience in our lifetime, there are many ways we're processing, coping, and dealing with the unknown. Some of us may be taking the time to learn something new or perhaps picking up an old hobby we simply lost touch with. Some of us may be binge-watching all of the Netflix or Hulu shows we never seemed to have time for before. Maybe we're trying to keep active and healthy both physically and mentally with yoga, at-home workouts, meditation, cooking healthier foods, etc. The important thing to remember is we're all going through this experience together, but we all feel its impact differently. Maybe it's not the same way you're choosing to get through, but try not to judge the way others are. Most importantly, don't judge yourself. Be kind to one another. Be gentle to you.
Personally, I needed a little inspiration! There's nothing that inspires me more than music and my favorite artists. I was curious about how some of them are spending their time social distancing from the world. Disconnecting? Interacting with fans? Creating? I spoke with musician and best selling author, Woody. He is the bassist in the band he helped found over a decade ago, Our Last Night. He recently published the best selling self-help book titled You Are The Rockstar! Contrary to the possible perception being in a heavy rock band might give off, he's a yoga and meditation enthusiast! He radiates amazing energy! Here is how he is spending his quarantine:
1. How are you holding up during these unpredictable times? A positive outlook and grateful perspective are crucial to staying grounded. How are you spending your time keeping a happy and healthy mind, body, and soul?
Woody: During these unpredictable times, I’ve been focusing on going inward. That has led me to better prioritization of my time, which has allowed me to deepen my relationship with myself through my meditation practice and through my physical practices of yoga, running, and just moving my body. Also, prioritizing time to create music, to develop myself as a musician and work on my voice, creating, and writing. I’ve also started writing another book, and a few other small projects on the side. I feel like if we don’t plan our time, then things feel scattered and we don’t ever feel like we’re making progress! I felt really guided towards being a little more specific with how I use my time and that all was because I felt so damn scattered for the first few weeks of this and I didn’t feel like I was making progress in any area of my life. Therefore, I took it upon myself to really ask what I wanted. I’ve been focusing on creating some small, micro goals each day, and doing my best to continue progressing in all of those areas. That’s been really helpful for me in almost creating my own happiness because progress creates happiness! Meditating in the mornings and evenings, to really come back to the breath, and detox from the day, as well as rationing my news consumption because we’re naturally drawn towards negativity, so that’s going to flood our mind and we’re going to start to dwell on that a little bit more. Props to anyone in industries still working right now, a lot of us who are cooped up are kind of forced to go inward both physically and mentally and that’s allowing us to see how we want to create moving forward, and what’s really important to us.
2. Are you turning to art and music to keep inspired? Creating it? Enjoying it? Both? What/who has helped the most?
Woody: Yeah, I’ve been turning to art and music a lot, especially music! The first couple of weeks I was practicing a ton, singing a lot more, I signed up for a singing course online which was great and have been working on a few different modalities of music creation and recording, which has been fun to play around with and see what works for me! For me, art is writing a lot of times, so I’ve really been hunkering down and focusing on writing the companion edition to my book You Are The Rockstar! It’s getting at our root belief systems of what limits us and how we can work to heal those, dissolve those, and create empowering ones as we move forward. My first book was kind of an overview, and this book is turning into a really juicy deep dive into those specific areas of belief system, perspective, values, and action as well as reaction. So, I can’t wait to get that out into the world!
3. Many people might be scared or living in fear. What is a message of encouragement you can leave them with to motivate a more peaceful mindset?
Woody: Right now we’re operating from a time of complete uncertainty and we know that when anyone comes from uncertainty, things get a little weird and hectic. When uncertainty rears its ugly head, then it’s almost as if someone has poured gasoline on a fire that’s already existing and then it spreads. It’s okay because what we’re being faced with right now is an opportunity to see what we need to work on, both within ourselves and in the world. Media is obviously going to harp on the negative because that’s naturally what we’re drawn to. We have this interesting obsession with negativity, so, if you’re looking for a message of hope, do your best to focus on things that are hopeful! I mean, read books that are positive and motivational. Focusing on the external when it’s negative, is going to just bring out more negative things in your life. Now, if you were to watch the news a lot, you would start to think that the world is legitimately going to shit. Ironically, we’re in a position as a world that we have the most technologically advanced societies ever. Even the poorest people now have access to things that the richest people like a hundred years ago had no idea was even possible. All of these things are really crazy beautiful, yet we are focusing on the negative doom and gloom. So, I don’t mean that it’s all just about being happy all the time and focusing only on all these technological advancements, but we really need to be reminded that things are positive and moving in a positive direction. We’re not in a hole as much as the media makes it seem that we’re in one. Yes, we’re challenged right now with a very difficult time, but we also have a lot of amazing things around us. If you’re scared or living in fear, do your best to monitor what you’re putting into your mental factory because what you put into your mind is going to play a huge deal in how you feel, what you get out, and your thinking. Do your best to have conversations with positive people, read positive things, watch inspiring things, put positivity in, and reflect what you wish to get out. That’s the bottom line. Also, question what’s being spoon-fed to you, because not everything is "truth."
4. What are you most looking forward to when we no longer have to live our lives social distancing from one another?
The thing I’m looking forward to the most when I’m not having to live a life of social distancing is going to visit my nephew! My sister just recently had a baby, and I can’t wait to see them. I also just met a beautiful woman who I'm very excited to spend more time with. I'm also very much ready to hug someone! I'm a hugger and being in a house alone for 2 months has made me miss those."
If you haven't already, check out my interview with Woody from this past December! I can only hope we can sit down together again sometime soon to connect again! Check out his band's music on Spotify, his book on Amazon, and follow him on Instagram @woodywoodrow
Stay safe and healthy. You're not alone. We will get through this stronger, more aware, and with far more compassion, empathy, and gratitude.