Isolation Tips From The Bottom Of The Sea

Ok, so maybe not the bottom of the sea, that would be a bad day in many respects. I spent 12 rewarding years in the Royal Navy Submarine Service. A band of unlikely individuals that almost thrive in many aspects of the isolated and locked down world we see ourselves in now. Prolonged period of isolation, from family, friends, fresh air, fresh food and sunlight make for…. A simple life. So easily we can see many aspects of our new (and hopefully temporary) lifestyles as a loss of liberties. In contrast however, it’s a pretty liberating time, free from many aspects that can often complicate and cloud what’s important in life. We are taking time to connect with those around us, for some, this can be more frequently than before. We are spending time watching and helping our children grow and develop. We are finding new hobbies, or building on existing ones. We have broken the Work - Sleep loop, and outside of the very real negatives around us, that’s amazing!

What I wont say however, with all the real positives that do exist, is that this is easy, hence my compiling some top tips from living under the waves that are just as relevant as they are now as we move through Covid-19 together.

  1. Set achievable and personal goals. Nothing about work! This is about you and your family. A new skill maybe, language, cooking? Read ‘that’ book you have gathering dust that seemed a great idea but you never had time. Something that you can work on day to day. Something that gives you a level of achievement.
  2. Give those around you space. Ok, I know I said we should all be spending time together in happy harmony. But in reality, we need space. We are not going to School/Work/College/Pub/Gym (Insert any other ‘place of escape’) that allows us to reflect and reset ourselves. Give those around you space, you may be around each other 24/7, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have time to escape into something as an individual.
  3. See, Say, Eat Do. Many Submariners and deployed Forces worldwide, will spin the same mantra as they near the end of a deployment. Who they look forward to seeing, Someone they look forward to talking to, a meal they can’t wait to enjoy and something they look forward to doing on their return (This is a family show folks!). They do this because it’s a focus, they do this to focus on what they look forward to. What’s more important is that it reinforces the importance of those aspects in their lives. There is a famous saying “It isn’t where you came from, it’s where you’re going that counts.” - Find your own See, Say, Eat Do.
  4. Last but in no means least, arguably the most important. Those that don’t ask for help are the ones that need it the most. While we see increasing numbers and statistics daily about the virus that has hit us; the unspoken statistic is the one on those around us and their mental health. For some people, they have been resigned to a lock down environment without any family or friends. Some work colleagues have never really worked from home and are not used to it. There are some people we may speak to daily. But ask yourself about the person that you don’t hear from. We have a multitude of text based communication platforms, they are very direct, efficient and cold. Pick up the phone, have skype call or whatever, but ask the person “How is your day going?” and give them time to answer, for some that could be the first verbal conversation they have had for days.

What will be your See, Say, Eat, Do’s (Again Family channel folks!?

What goals are you working on?

If you can think of someone you would call; stop reading or typing, this will be here another day, be there for that person today.