Out of the window the other day I noticed a large bird’s nest on its own at the top of a tall tree. Way above the houses and without the shelter of leaves, it looked very lonely. But when I saw it my first thought was, “How lovely to have a nest to shelter in!” I wondered who it belonged to and whether it still had residents.
It also brought to mind the situation we currently find ourselves in – all in our own nests, out on a limb. Some of us might feel vulnerable and exposed, while others are finding it very lonely. I’ve also spoken to friends who are relishing the opportunity to have some time and space to potter around the house. Whether we have a small flat, a room in a shared house or a mansion in the countryside, we will all face challenges in being confined to four walls over the next few weeks. But one thing that most of us have in common is that we have a nest, a space we can call home.
It can be tempting to look at other people’s ‘nest situations’ and feel a twinge of jealousy. I’ve seen parents on social media wishing they could have five minutes away from their kids to get other things done, while many who live alone would give anything to have another human in the house with them.
Many of these frustrations are completely understandable. But I don’t believe that thinking about the greener grass (or the comfier nest) will help us to get through the next few weeks. There are choices we can all make to help us appreciate our own home situation. Get creative and share ideas – you might just be helping others out too!
- Think about what you love about your space – even the smallest ‘bright side’ can change the way you feel about your home.
- You can talk through challenges on the phone to a friend, take time to be thankful every day and think of strategies to deal with the challenges you face.
- If you live in a busy house and need a bit of space, perhaps there’s a way to carve out 20 minutes a day in a room on your own?
- If you live on your own and crave company, could you set up regular virtual dinners on the phone with a friend?
Thinking about how to relieve the pressure on others also helps take our focus away from our own problems. This could be neighbours, loved ones or people you don’t know. There are also many people without the shelter of a safe home at the moment. For these people the current lockdown will be immensely challenging and frightening. There are ways you can help – your local council and local charity websites are a good place to start if you’re stuck for ideas.
Your nest might not be where you want to be at the moment, but it is where you need to be. Take some time to appreciate the shelter and safety it gives you, whatever challenges it presents.