This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017. It’s an old favorite, and it appears on our page devoted to The Most Important Thing You Can Do. We are reposting it now as a reminder that you can, and should, take a break from the news while you are obeying lockdown/self-isolation/quarantine during COVID-19. Do you need our formal dispensation to step away from the news and everywhere you receive it? Then you have it, here, and now. Step away. Exercise. Play a board game or a video game. Read a book or watch a movie that has nothing whatsoever to do with politics. Rest up. You’ve got to stay here to carry on the fight.
For your own sanity’s sake, plan periodic breaks from fighting Trump and his ilk.
With so much going on, it might be tough to convince yourself to step away and rest. But you must if you want to fight Trump and the Republicans effectively. No, really. You’ve heard people say ‘This is a marathon, not a sprint’? It’s not a bunch of yap-yap. You can’t go the distance if you don’t slow down to grab some water every now and again.
You need to sit yourself down and plan these respites, and you need to commit to them. Blocking out one day a week where you disengage from the news and from social media to do something you like–be it hiking, knitting, reading, hanging out with friends, or binge-watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer–put it on your calendar and don’t talk yourself out of it.
If you’re having trouble giving yourself permission to take one day off a week, then let us at OTYCD tell it to you straight:
“We, your friends at the One Thing You Can Do blog, are telling you, our faithful reader, to unplug and chill out completely once a week. We are giving you formal permission to do so.”
Print it out and tape it to your mirror, or your computer monitor, or staple it to your forehead–whatever it takes to get through to you.
If you won’t listen to OTYCD on this, follow Jen Hofmann on Twitter and subscribe to her Weekly Activism Checklist newsletter. She’s a fire-breathing evangelist for self-care.
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