Being MultiTalented During the Pandemic

Before I deactivated my Facebook account and decided to give social media a rest for a while, I kept seeing posts about all the things you could do during quarantine. And I was really puzzled: do these people have kids?

My life became busier, not more open, since quarantine. Our kids can no longer do their activities in the evenings, and they’re still young enough that they need me a lot of the time. So no, I did not have time to clean my whole house from top to bottom, or sign up for a new course, or do all the wonderful things (hopefully) well-intentioned souls on social media tell you to do. As a matter of fact, I’m catching up on my blogs because my husband and I agreed that when he took a vacation week, I’d work during the day. When he’s working, I barely have time to catch my breath. But I have been learning to set more time aside for myself, guilt-free. And it feels good.

Being MultiTalented During the Pandemic, www.marianamcdougall.com. Background photo of bi-color shoes by

I’m still a multi-passionate person. I’m still and will always be perpetually curious and genuinely interested in just about anything. I still remember a time when I asked someone about the research about their PhD, and they wouldn’t tell me, citing that no one is interested in what they study. That was a frustrating conversation. And being a multi-passionate person during the pandemic, especially a person that has to be stuck at home while other people resume their lives, is also frustrating. It’s frustrating because there’s never been a better time to learn something new. All kinds of places are making their content free, there’s a plethora of new places to learn online, and society is finally encouraging people who have long ago graduated to study again. But… I just don’t have the time to take all the courses I’m interested in. Pandemic or not, that’s always the case. I have so many interests I can never quite satisfy all of them. So I must pick and choose.

Here’s how I’ve been able to feed some of my interests during the pandemic, despite being more encumbered than ever:

I talked about Habitica in a previous post. Habitica is making me do stuff. It’s a little voice in the back of my head that says, it’s OK to take 15 minutes to study French. Your kids can entertain themselves for that long. It’s that little voice int he back of my head saying, it’s OK to take 25 minutes to read a book. Your kids can do the same. And the best part? I got the kids to buy in to Habitica, so they want to get their extra things done as well. Which means a little extra time for me to do the things I’d like to do. And I’m doing them with a lot less guilt these days. 

If you’re multitalented, actually have time, and are bored, stay tuned.

I have previously compiled lists to learn just about anything online, and I’ll be sharing them in a post soon. For now, check out the list I’ve already shared for free homeschooling resources, and don’t forget to visit your local library’s website. Despite most libraries still being closed to the public, the majority offer a plethora of online services for anyone with a library card.

Accountability in Practice: How I Stay Accountable with My Personal Goals

I’m not great with accountability. Let me rephrase that. I’m an accountable person when it comes to my work. But when it comes to personal goals, I often don’t do well with accountability strategies, such as checking in with an accountability buddy. But I think that’s just because I hadn’t found “my people” yet.

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