Tips for finding calm in the chaos.
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If you’re one of the millions who are choosing to stay home right now, you know that isolation can feel, well, isolating. For those of us living outside of our hometown, like myself, it can be even more challenging to access the usual comfort of being at home. I’ve been living in San Diego for six months now and still feel myself settling into my west coast community. A big question I’ve been asking myself is, “how can I create a feeling of familiarity as a transplant who still feels foreign?” In other words, what are some ways I can establish a sense of community and comfort without being able to explore my new city? Here are some things I’ve come up with that are making staying in my house feel like being home.
Coming together around the dining room table is an experience that’s been elevating social wellness for thousands of years. Growing up, sitting down to have dinner as a family was an important piece of my home life. Since traveling of any kind is currently off the table (or is it?), gathering with family is an impossible task. We’ve instituted virtual family meals over Zoom that transport me right back to my seat at the table.
Moving to a new city means leaving behind your family, friends, and favorite instructors. While it’s been a blast to work up a sweat trying all the local studios in San Diego, I still have a huge place in my heart for my hometown teachers. One of the hardest parts about leaving New York was knowing I'd have to replace my regular yoga schedule at Hudson Yoga Project with a new one. But over the last few weeks, they’ve rolled out virtual classes that help me feel like I'm right back in the studio with my favorite east coast instructors. All I have to do is book on Mindbody, open my computer, and roll out my mat. Win-win, right? If you want to check out the virtual classes your hometown has to offer, just set your location and start exploring.
Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name. Shopping at small businesses is an awesome way to immerse yourself into a new community. Though you may not be able to sit down for some corner eats or shop for a new work-from-home wardrobe at your local boutique, there are plenty of ways to support your local business owners from the comfort of your own home.
Call in a takeout order from a restaurant you’ve been wanting to try and strike up a conversation with the staff. Let them know you’ll be in once they’re back to business as usual. Donate your piggy bank funds to your favorite shop. Shop online from your local boutiques. Kick it up a notch by sharing your support on social media, letting them know you’re grateful for their communal contribution.
If you’re on social media, odds are you’ve stumbled upon friends challenging one another to different quarantine activities. Workout buddies usually make showing up for your fitness routine way easier. With the rise of virtual fitness, it’s easy to corral friends from near and far to join in on your fitness schedule. Share a link to your Mindbody virtual class and snapshot your workout in action. Nominate your workout pals from across the country and keep the movement up from city to city. Hint: Tag @mindbody in your WFH workout stories for a chance to be featured!
Modern technology keeps it pretty easy to stay in touch with friends between Zoom, texting, and social media. However, nothing feels as personal as a handwritten letter. I ordered some postcards from one of my favorite local shops and wrote letters to my friends with a list of what makes them so amazing. This kind of reflection is a great reminder of what a strong, loving community you’ve already got under your belt.
Remember that social distancing doesn’t mean diminishing community. Follow us on Instagram @mindbody to stay connected with our like-minded community. Have an exciting way of finding comfort in your home away from hometown? Give us a shout and we’ll spread the word.
Want to support local salons? Browse Mindbody to find one near you, then head to their website to see if you can purchase products or gift cards!
For the first time ever, the globe will be watching surfing take center stage at the 2020 (postponed to July 2021) Olympics. People from all over the world will be appreciating the sport, many for the first time.
This symbolizes the surfing community breaking through centuries of negative stereotypes. Though conditions play a big part in the sport, the biggest hurdle the athletes will have to overcome to see success is mental. The winner will be the one who chooses their waves wisely with their understanding of the conditions and ability to intimidate and therefore overcome components. Meanwhile, they will be challenging themselves to emerge from crashing barrels, fly into the air, and land on the shifting surface gracefully. No big deal.
You’ve probably heard the invention of a wave pool, which creates the perfect man-made wave. In 2007, Kelly Slater founded his wave company with a passion to build the perfectly rideable wave at his surf ranch. It was debated whether the Olympics should be held in the ocean or on a manufactured wave, with many differing opinions on what would be right. The decision was made, and the event will take place in the sea, at Tsurigasaki Beach in Japan, about 40 miles east of Tokyo, where the rest of the 2021 games will be hosted.
As you watch, take a moment to reflect on the century of effort for this to happen. This initiative can be traced all the way back to the 1912 summer games that took place in Stockholm. Duke Kahanamoku, known as the father of modern surfing, won three gold medals in swimming, and while accepting his medal, he expressed that it was his dream to see surfing be added. To add fuel to the fire, International Surfing Association, recognized as the surfing world's governing authority by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), began lobbying for the inclusion of surfing in the Olympics in 1955.
Surfing is a multidimensional sport unlike any other. Nothing compares to paddling out to the serene silence that awaits beyond the breaking waves. Once you get out there, you immediately escape the many annoyances ingrained in everyday life—the constant notifications on your phone and laptop, your back-to-back schedule, answering to other people. You’re no longer on the time that your watch reads, you’re on mother nature’s time. You’re also no longer in control of your surroundings. Now, all you can do is surrender and wait for the next set to come, while trying to position yourself for when it does.
The high from catching the perfect wave is so addicting that surfers would fail on one hundred in a row just to catch that one. After you catch that perfect one, you replay it in your mind for the rest of the day.
A successful session is reliant on so many factors of mother nature—a force way bigger than us. For ideal conditions to exist, a good-sized swell must approach from the right direction, the wind must be flowing offshore, and you have to time your session right with the ebb and flow of the tide.
The sport is always teaching you life lessons. It is humbling, even if you’ve been practicing it for many years. One reason why it takes so long to master is that the conditions are going to be different every time you get out there. You might have caught a million yesterday, but today makes you feel like a kook because you can’t land one decent wave.
The community of people that you become a part of when you surf is special. A shared obsession with the ocean that brings you to dive into the water at dawn to get a session in bonds you quick. When you’re out there, you’ll find yourself interacting with people of all ages and backgrounds. People enjoy sharing the stoke of the sport. When you see someone out there teaching somebody new, you’ll encounter them cheering at the top of their lungs when they catch a good wave, and as you look around, you’ll see smiles all across the lineup. The other day, I caught a long wave in to be met with a cheering crowd of locals who frequent the spot that I do. When I got to shore, a local showed me their secret stash of hot packs to access in case I, or someone else, gets stung by a stingray when they aren’t around.
Being out in the ocean and abiding by her rules gives surfers a deep love and connection to nature. It’s common to see sea animals out there, like dolphins, stingrays, and fish. When you have an encounter, it’s a reminder that we are invading their territory. It sucks when you see trash floating in the water, or on the sand in its route to the water. It’s a sad reminder of the negative impact that humans can have on natural environments. It inspires you to pick up trash and advocate for sustainability so that we, as a collective, can take care of the beauty that we are lucky to have access to.
Tune in to see surfing break into the biggest international sporting event in the world beginning on Saturday, July 24th.
Do you live by the ocean? Paddle out with an instructor.
Don't live by the water, but still want to train for your next surf trip? Consider these classes.
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