Create, make, publish, write. Now more than ever we need people to be taking notes on what’s going on in the world.

There was an article that passed through Readup warning of an upcoming gaslighting as we get out of this pandemic and back to reality. This is the “everything is fine, go back to work, go back to spending, forget what just happened” strategy. It hit hard.

Disasters, whether hurricanes or viruses, show the cracks in the system that we live in and give us an awareness that we would not otherwise be able to grasp. This is a gift.

The problem is that human memory is a mess. Within moments of logging a memory, we start to warp it as soon as we recall it. Witnesses are notoriously untrustworthy after accidents because we can be led so easily by words (crash vs hit) and by how we see the world.

I thumbed through a stack of old notebooks this morning and reexamining experiences I wrote about while fresh was quite different from how I had remembered them in my head. Our brains remember feelings more than facts and this causes the facts to shift over time to align with the feelings.

Every one of my friends in the days after giving birth says “oh hell no” to ever doing that again. Give them a year to forget vomiting daily from morning sickness and the birth process and voila, all they remember are sweet, saccharine memories of a newborn and they’re ready to do it all over again. Our memories are total garbage, but there’s a biological benefit to glossing it all over so we’re willing to get back in the ring.

If you’re reeling right now, or on the flipside enjoying the reprieve, write that shit down. Take notes. Record a video if you’re a talker and not a writer, but do what you can to take a log of what’s happening because you won’t remember it later. You might have an idea of how it felt, or at least the most memorable emotions you experienced, but the explicit thoughts that are running through your head will be the first to go.

Take these shifts, these lessons, and let them guide you going forward. This will let you thrive when we finally get back to our lives again. Be agile, and be willing to change your mind about how you view the world.

My realizations so far? A handful include: I’m outdoorsy (I’ve identified as indoorsy for years so this was a huge shift), I don’t want to live in the suburbs and would prefer to live a bit further from town (farm life!), I adore hiking, I don’t care if I wear makeup, and that conversion copywriting was not as recession-proof as I had banked on.

What has shifted for you in how you see yourself or the world during this pandemic?


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