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  • Writer's pictureMim Bartos

What About Bob?

During this coronavirus pandemic, it’s easy to feel stagnant and immobile. Especially since we receive almost constant reminders to ‘stay put.’ This immobility not only impacts our physical state, but our emotional, mental, and spiritual states as well.

To combat this, we’re bombarded with another almost constant message to ‘stay active.’ There are ideas for this everywhere. The news, social media, outside our windows, in our minds…. It’s easy to become overly motivated or feel as if we are not doing enough. We bite off more than we can chew thinking there is plenty of time to do it ALL. We inevitably discover that we can’t, in fact, do it all. We feel unsuccessful, discouraged, physically and mentally exhausted, and spiritually depleted. Stagnant and Immobile.

“What About Bob?” staring Bill Murray is a well-loved and repeatedly watched movie for my family. (If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend you check it out!) Over the years I’ve often taken inspiration from Bob. His manta of taking Baby Steps has kept me from dropping into the deepest caverns and helped me climb over some tremendous mountains. Those times, however, were extremely difficult and the baby steps took massive amounts of effort despite some of them being almost invisible.

At some point, I noticed the phrase “Baby Steps” had taken on new meaning. It was no longer a reference to will-power and effort. It’s now relates to maintaining a steady course. Baby steps are okay, a natural and much needed part of life that holds balance between the drive to move forward and the need to stay put.

I find this meaning relevant to the current times. We are under instruction to ‘stay put’ but that does not mean we can’t move forward. There may be a need or opportunity to move forward, but that does not mean we can’t be still.

These past few weeks under the ‘stay at home’ orders, I have experienced all kinds of baby steps. Baby Steps to slow down. Baby Steps to speed up. Baby Steps to socially distance. Baby Steps to socially connect. Baby Steps to watch more news. Baby Steps to watch less news. Baby Steps to go to the store. Baby Steps to NOT go to the store. Baby Steps to clean more. Baby Steps to clean less. Baby Steps to get more sleep. Baby Steps to get less sleep. Baby Steps to re-ignite my yoga practice. Baby Steps to read more books. Baby Steps to watch a movie marathon. Baby Steps to prepare more home-cooked meals. Baby Steps to sit in silence. Baby steps to find balance.

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