We all have a lot of time on our frequently washed hands these days—more than most of us are used to. As social distancing forces the hectic, caffeinated art world to grind to a virtual halt, we find ourselves at a collective loss for how to fill the extra hours. Coffee runs, studio visits, late nights at the gallery—all cancelled.
Social distancing is hitting us extra hard because, as you know, the art world is a profoundly social place. Luckily, we still have the Internet. Ironically, we’ve lived to see the day when social media *actually* brings us together instead of making us feel more lonely. Checking in with your family, your friends, your artists and your interns will have immeasurable impact on our collective morale, so do it. With much of the world on lockdown, we truly have no more excuses for putting off that FaceTime with a long distance friend, so pick up the phone and call. Do it now. Seriously, we’ll wait.
As artists already know all too well, being cooped up alone all day can take a toll on mental health. Add a little uncertainty about the future of civilization into the mix and you have a foolproof recipe for a breakdown. That’s why it’s so important to take care of yourself, mind, body and spirit, during social distancing.
On the bright side, social distancing gives us all the time in the world to work in some self-care into our daily routines. While your instincts might keep you glued to the news all day, this can be incredibly stressful and draining. News flash: unless you are the president of a country or the CDC, your responsibility to keep up with the latest twists and turns of this surreal saga is much lower than you think. While it can feel irresponsible to disconnect from the outside world right now, try to reframe social distancing as a rare, precious opportunity to look inward.
Let’s be honest; there’s a tiny, guilty part of all of us that’s secretly a little relieved to be on government-mandated lockdown. If nothing else, I, for one, might actually get around to cleaning my bathroom mirror, which, since I started flossing, has seen better days. Now’s the time to dive deep into your treasure box marked “Things I Would Do If I Had The Time.” You finally have all the time… really, all of it.
And in case you’ve misplaced your own personal treasure box, I’ve decided to spill mine. Below, a curated list of things you could be doing to spice up your quarantine between instead of refreshing Twitter and napping—although naps are definitely encouraged.
View this post on Instagram
*~*~*~ ????????⛲️ + ???????? + James is posting a newsletter every day of reflections and practices to take part in during the pandemic. Every day. Follow @goteamjames to get them in your feed. Also the name of the newsletter is “What do I do with my hands” which is a dream and a half…. it somehow covers every part of this. + If you enjoy my content and desire more: Find more swipe-thru guides in my highlight “GUIDES”. Find long-form PDFs on Meditation as well as Spells & Rituals in my shop. Find multiple Vlogs on a variety of topics in my Patreon. All can be found at the link in my bio. ⛲️
1) Dive (deeper) into a yoga practice
View this post on Instagram
Update day 6: arm pits smell better today. Have not gained weight or lost muscle I just look like this doggo normally. Also, not mad about that because hims thighs are juicy and cute. . . . #yogaeverydamnday #practice #practiceandalliscoming #redlandsyoga #theyogaroomredlands #yogameme #funnyyoga #yogamemes
If you’re already sitting around in loungewear all day, you might as well plunk yourself down on your mat. Take a break from stress-eating Inner Peas to actually find some inner peace with a free yoga vid. Check out some of our favorites below.
For a sweaty, serious practice in every style, try Fightmaster Yoga.
For chill yin yoga you can do in your PJs, check out Yoga with Kassandra.
Or, head to Yoga with Adriene for super creative themed classes from 5 to 45 minutes (she even does meditations!).
If you want a little eye candy to go with your flow, look no further than Patrick Beach’s channel (sorry, girls, he’s taken).
Glo Yoga is an app that lets you quickly search for a meditation, Pilates or yoga class, sorted by levels. Once you do a few, it’ll give you recs based on your interests.
If you’re feeling a little unconventional, head to Buti Yoga to get the, yes, booty of your dreams. “Yoga” might be in the title, but don’t be fooled—you won’t find any incense (or bearded Indian men in turbans) here. Buti is a modern remix of Vinyasa that blends yoga, cardio dance, booty sculpting and “primal movement,” cooked in a steamy soup of self-love. They boast an average calorie burn of 600-900 per class. The online subscription platform offers a 14-day free trial for those of us not ready to commit.
Or, if you’re ready to level up your home practice, try a free trial with Movement for Modern Life, a subscription platform offering yoga, mindfulness and meditation videos by world-renowned teachers.
2) Host a dance party for one
May the art gods bless Spotify user jenniferw613, who created this glorious playlist aptly titled “Social Isolation Dance Party.” For two hours and one minute, good vibes will abound. These tunes will definitely get you off the couch, moving and grooving, shaking off the stressed and depressed vibes. If you’re not feeling a full-on home workout, pop it on as you clean your room, do your laundry, bake a quarantine cake… guaranteed to enhance any at-home experience by at least 300%.
3) Discover belly dancing
Want to get the toned tummy of a problematic Orientalist painting’s subject? We can help. Or, rather, professional belly dancer Leiah Isaac can. Head to her YouTube channel for tutorials, workouts and routines, including a whole section of Shakira-style workouts… you’re welcome. Not only will these moves kick your butt and tone your core, but Leiah Isaac is an actual ray of sunshine incarnate in a cute British girl’s body. There’s no chance you’ll make it through one of these without a significant mood boost.
4) Learn ballet from the pros
Or, if you’re more of a Degas kind of girl, check out this ballet workout series by the graceful demigods of the New York City Ballet. The hour-long videos are certainly dated, as evidenced by the scary hair height of Sarah Jessica Parker, who introduces the video. And yet, this might be the most serene workout video on the Internet. Peter Martins narrates in his smooth jazz radio voice while professional dancers demo the moves, all on a backdrop of a gentle classical soundtrack. Don’t be fooled, though—the moves are hard.
5) Bike your brains out
View this post on Instagram
Feeling a little overwhelmed? Yeah, us too. If you’re in need of a supportive community and a way to clear your mind, we invite new users to try the Peloton App free for 90 days. In addition to our cycling and running classes, you’ll have yoga, meditation, strength, stretching, bodyweight cardio and strength training. All you need is a mat to get started. Tap the link in bio to download.
That’s right, my spin class thots. Peloton is offering a 90-day free trail. Throw on your lulus and get ready to rumble—bikini season waits for no one
6) Be.come your best you
View this post on Instagram
When we look at this powerful illustration by @guadypleskacz (check out their work ????) we can’t help but see the words “be.come together”. Tomorrow, you’ll have the chance to do just that…we have a very special charitable surprise coming your way. Stay tuned for how you can give back!
Non-binary fitness and lifestyle culture figure by day, LGBTQ+ activist by night, Bethany C. Meyers has launched the workout platform that promises to right the wrongs of all the workout platforms that have come before. The be.come project offers one short workout each week, to be repeated daily. They’re only 25 minutes long, but scarily efficient—and if time isn’t really of the essence these days, you can always do it twice.
The moves are rooted in yoga, pilates and dance and can be modified for more or less intensity. Best of all, Bethany completely shuts down fitness culture’s most pernicious BS, like before/after pics. Join now with a 10-day free trail.
1) Rest and digest
View this post on Instagram
It’s Cleanse + Reset this weekend – hands up who needs this right now?! ???????????? Starting on Saturday, the plan is FREE – sign up on link in bio if you haven’t already☝️and read on below… . Spring Equinox 2020 is tomorrow (or today in some parts of the world) – when the daylight is equal to, or even a little longer, than night time – hello sunshine!!! ???? ???? ???? This is when I like to do my second Cleanse + Reset of the year to prep my body for the change from Winter to Spring. ???? ???????? What better time to fortify the mind-body than in this current climate ???? … and now with the self-imposed isolation many of us can do all 3 days of C+R from the comfort of our homes ???? . . An Ayurveda inspired #CleanseandReset is a supportive plan for your digestion and overall health – 4 simple recipes (and one of them is a tea ???? ) designed to be easy to digest, nourishing and comforting, allowing you to make the most of resting so that your body can do what it needs to. It uses a lot of store cupboard ingredients that you can get at local stores and I share a list of alternatives if you can’t get them or can’t eat them. Then just add fresh veg ???????????? – the one thing the supermarkets still have! If you don’t have the Cleanse + Reset plan yet, just subscribe to my newsletter (link up top in bio ☝️) and you’ll receive it in a Welcome newsletter completely FREE ???? If you have taken part in my Cleanse and Reset — then you’ll have the info already. Just go to your emails and search “Here's your 3-day Cleanse + Reset plan” and the Welcome email with the C+R link at the bottom should pop up. If you have any issues, contact me at [email protected] . Meanwhile, who fancies a sound bath meditation live on Sat night straight from my living room? ???? And don’t forget to join @drmathewayurveda at 8pm for #SundaySlow on my Instagram Live – DM me your questions ????. . #ayurveda #livinglavidaveda #cleanse #healthyliving #livingayurveda #springcleanse #springequinox #meditation
We’re usually too busy running from fair to fair to notice the days getting longer, but this year, why not celebrate the spring equinox properly? The turning points between seasons are wonderful opportunities to reset our systems.
Jasmine Hemsley, London’s favorite Ayurvedic It Girl, has put together a three-day “Cleanse + Reset” program, four easy recipes that’ll help your body emerge from its winter cocoon—no celery juice involved. If you’re feeling like your system needs a little reset, try this no-stress cleanse that you can easily throw together with the contents of your pantry.
2) Or, unleash your inner chef
View this post on Instagram
We built this business with a single mission in mind: to help as many people as possible experience deep and vibrant health through the power of plant nutrition. That mission feels more important than ever and will continue to drive every decision we make as a business, with the health of our community and team always top of mind. There are a lot of unknowns right now, but the Sakara kitchens continue to operate, our team continues to deliver, and our healing Clean Boutique products continue to ship to households across the nation. At a time when, for many of us, grocery shopping suddenly feels anxiety-provoking and social distancing feels like an appropriate measure, we're doing our best to ensure you can still receive nourishing, superfood-rich, and immune-boosting nutrition when you need it most. We are closely monitoring CDC and FDA recommendations and will let you know if anything changes in the future. And should you want to minimize your human interactions at this time, just let us know and our team will leave your delivery outside your door. For more information on the additional precautions we’re taking and options we’re offering in light of current circumstances, read our FAQ at the link in bio. Lastly, know that the Sakara team is here to support you always. Connect with us via DM. Start a conversation in the comments section. Shoot our Wellness Team an email. Now more than ever, it feels important to keep the sense of community strong. Let’s use this time to slow down, take rest, count our blessings, and eat our greens. Love and Light to all beings everywhere, Team Sakara
Looking to cook up a storm in style? Sakara Life’s S Magazine published a list of social isolation-themed recipes for all your quarantine moods.
Listen and watch
1) Peep Jerry Gogosian’s new podcast
The art world’s favorite anon memer has hit pause on the snark to call up some of the art world’s big names. In these candid, no-edit coversations, Jerry and her interviewees discuss what COV-19 means for the future of the art world. Available on Spotify.
2) Attend a concert in your PJs
Pitchfork has put together a daily, ongoing compilation of playlists, new music and even musicians hosting free livestreams to help us boogie the blues away.
3) Peruse Russell Brand’s YouTube channel
Equal parts entertainment and enlightenment, post-spiritual awakening Russel Brand’s YouTube channel is utterly sublime. Whether you’re looking for a hot take on the current crisis, some Kundalini yoga, or just a good laugh, look no further. He has some things to say about social isolation and mental health, too.
1) Tune into the Met Opera nightly livestream
Since the famed Metropolitan Opera has been forced to close its doors mid-season, it’s now offering free daily livestreams of past favorites. Operas will be available to watch in the day following the stream. Check the site for the up-to-date schedule.
2) Visit a virtual museum
With brick-and-mortar museums shutting down, you can still get your dose of arts and culture with virtual tours. Google Arts and Culture has teamed up with dozens of the world’s best museums to offer online tours of their collections, and the Louvre has put up its own virtual tour.
If there’s one positive side to this crisis, it’s that we all finally have the time to take care of ourselves. Many companies and organizations are generously opening their hearts and their content up to the public to help us cope. The Free Mindfulness Project has compiled an ongoing list of free online mindfulness resources, including online courses, live practice sessions, articles, apps, and even a collection of mindfulness poetry.
Or, for a smorgasbord of mindfulness and spirituality content, check out Gaia, a subscription platform that offers a free weeklong trial.
Instead of sitting around worrying about actual death, why not have a little death instead? While we’re waiting and praying for a cure for corona, orgasms might be the best medicine we’ve got. Lowering stress and boosting your immunity, having an orgasm is an obvious way to pass the time while you’re lounging semi-clothed in your bed, anyway. It’s a free activity that can be practiced alone, with online guidance, with a partner, or even in groups, if you’re into that. But remember, six feet apart!
Got any tips on how to make the best of social distancing? Drop us a note at @the_art_gorgeous and we’ll publish the best tips on our story.
Text by Katya Lopatko.
Images via WikiArt and Tumblr.