Our world is rapidly changing.

Things feel uncertain right now with the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) around the globe. More and more people are told to stay home, and life is beginning to look different for us all. It will take time to adjust to such drastic changes, but Jay Shetty is committed to helping in whatever ways he can.  

“In this time where some of us may have more time than we expected, we may feel more stressed and more anxious,” he said. “We may even feel more busy and more panicked than ever before. It's so important that we still find time for ourselves.” 

“I want you to know, I'm praying for you,” Jay Shetty continued. “I want you to know that I meditate for you. And I want you to know I'm here for you. I want to be finding you the best information, the best connections, the best advice and insight that could support and serve you at this time.” 

Seeing the Blessing Instead of the Curse

Social distancing can seem difficult and scary, especially for those who live alone or those who are far from home and separated from loved ones. Despite that, it is necessary, and Jay Shetty believes that with the correct mindset, it can be viewed as a blessing and not a curse. 

In our uber-connected world, many are not accustomed to being isolated. That in itself makes social distancing a challenging thing with which to wrestle. It can also be hard to hold onto peace and calm in an ever-evolving scenario full of unknowns. Jay Shetty is convinced, however, that having the right mindset and motivation will allow this to be a time of opportunity and growth instead of a time of fear and despair. 

“I truly believe that there is an opportunity,” Shetty said. “There is always a chance to grow in any situation.”

What is Isolation?

Isolation is often thought of as loneliness. Loneliness can be scary or uncomfortable, especially during trying times. Jay Shetty reminded listeners there is another type of isolation: solitude. 

“Solitude,” said Shetty, “means you become good company to yourself.”  

While loneliness can be viewed as weakness – we are not wanted, not valued enough to be invited, not thought highly of – solitude can be viewed as intentional and powerful.  Jay Shetty believes there can be joy in solitude. If utilized positively, it can be a powerful time of growth and learning.  

“Solitude can be powerful,” he said. “It can be strong. It can be resilient. It can actually lead to our greatness. And that's what I want us to recognize at this time. I'm hoping you recognize that being alone is not a weakness. Being alone is a strength. Being alone is power. And in solitude, you can actually uncover your potential.” 

According to Jay Shetty, there are three key things you can focus on during isolation that will not only help you make the most of the opportunity, but also bring growth and peace.   

Key #1: Get to Know Yourself

The first thing you can do to turn isolation into opportunity is to use the time to connect with yourself.

“I want you to journal,” Jay Shetty encouraged listeners. “I want you to look at your reflections. I want you to learn how to talk to yourself. I want you to learn how to be able to conversate with yourself, I want you to be able to understand your feelings and emotions more deeply.”   

Your journal doesn’t have to be fancy, and Shetty made it very clear that journaling is not the same as writing a book. There is no method to follow or rules of what can or can’t be done. According to Shetty, journaling is just recording your thoughts in some way, whether on paper, audibly, or online. 

First, learn to express your thoughts to yourself. If you can’t express your thoughts to yourself, you’ll have a hard time expressing them to others. Processing your thoughts as they go from your head to a piece of paper is a powerful part of being centered and finding peace.

Second, find out what you love to do in your own company. As creatures of habit, we become so accustomed to doing enjoyable things with other people that we don’t even know what it looks like to do them on our own. Jay Shetty believes this time of solitude is the perfect opportunity to rediscover that feeling.  

“It’s important to ask yourself, ‘What can I do every day on my own that brings me joy?’” said Shetty. “What do I like doing on my own time, in my own space?”

Pick up a hobby you’ve always wanted to try, like playing music, dancing, reading, playing a game, or meditating. Find something that brings you joy and use this time to revel in it. 

Key #2: Don’t Abandon Connection

Jay Shetty reminded listeners that social distancing and practicing solitude is not a call to abandon relationships. It merely requires a different way of looking at connection. 

“When you're lonely, you think you're missing people’s presence, but actually, you're missing the experience,” he said.  

This is good news during times of solitude. Thanks to the large number of communication options available, we can continue to connect with people and share experiences with them. Social media is a treasure trove of connection. 

  • Check in with a friend
  • Play a game online
  • Have a virtual tea party
  • Exercise together
  • Write a letter
  • Pray or meditate with one another.  

Finding ways to stay connected not only lifts spirits, but maintains a sense of normalcy.  

Shetty believes that there are two secrets to connection success. First, commit to do it daily. Stay consistent in making it happen to see true results. 

Second, be strategic. Know what you are doing ahead of time so when the time together starts, you’re ready. This takes the guesswork out and means that motivation and excitement to get started kicks in right away. A consistent plan paves the way for success. 

Meditation is also an important part of staying peaceful and connected during turbulent times. Jay Shetty will be leading a live guided meditation every day for the next 20 days at 9:30 AM Pacific Standard Time, and everyone's invited. 

“No matter how lonely you are, wherever you are, you can tune in with me on Facebook and Instagram Live,” he said. “I will be there, present with you, guiding you through that activity. I really, really want you to come and join me so you never have to feel alone. I'll be there with you every single day for the next 20 days.”

Finding ways to experience life together during this time of distancing will help keep you healthy and connected. 

“Think of new ideas,” Shetty urged. “Think of more fresh ideas. Think outside the box as to how you can communicate, connect with people and have a shared experience.” 

Human connection is vital now more than ever. The ability to see circumstances differently and take advantage of unique opportunities can be a lifesaver during the pandemic.

Key #3: Get Out in Nature 

Appreciating one’s surroundings can be an amazing grounding experience. When things start to feel unsettled, getting out in nature can have a huge effect on health and attitude. Time to get out into fresh air if at all possible. Go for a walk, sit in the sun, and feel the breeze. Nature has a way of healing. 

Jay Shetty also believes this is a perfect time to practice the 3 S’s – taking notice of sights, sounds, and smells around you. The 3 S’s can help ground you and remind you to appreciate all that is around you instead of getting caught in your thoughts, fears or emotions. 

Weather keeping you inside? Create spaces of calm and tranquility inside your home.  Now is a great time to declutter, add relaxing scents, decorate with pieces that bring joy, and play music that ushers in positive energy. 

“Clean your home,” Jay Shetty urged. “Keep everything neat, then transform your surroundings through sights, smells, and sounds. Make your home a space that gives you energy, not takes it away.”   

A space of tranquility will be a welcome refuge when life gets overwhelming or lonely.  In the midst of this crazy time, Shetty reminded listeners that there is hope. Even if you feel alone, we are all in this together. 

More From Jay Shetty 

Listen to the entire On Purpose with Jay Shetty podcast episode on the “3 Ways to Deal with Loneliness and Social Distancing” now in the iTunes store or on Spotify. For more inspirational stories and messages like this, check out Jay’s website at jayshetty.me.