Minimalism and the Corona Virus

In the recent months, I happened to come across a lot on “Minimalism”. A friend had written about how she gave away a lot of clothes and how she and her family live without a TV and a refrigerator. This means they also store very little at home and buy things as they need them. She emphasized how they are working towards a strong value system of being happy with minimal possessions.

More interestingly, the Nehru Centre Library in Mumbai planned to hold an event – a book reading and discussion. The book is Cal Newport’s “Digital Minimalism: On Living Better with Less Technology” . The librarian of the Nehru Centre – Arati Desai felt that I should be one of the panelists for the discussion and sent me the book. I naturally recommended my friend too as a panelist and was happy that the suggestion worked out.

I have read just about 1/3 of the book now. When I started, I decided to making notes as I read. I first wondered how the author managed without a smart phone, social media and more. The voices in my head were justifying to me that the work for QMed cannot happen without all these tools!

But as I read, his conviction seems to be coming through. Yes – even when I have about 70% of the book to complete! You see, Cal has this important point to make. “Identify your values in life. See what technology you need, to stay with those values. And use only that much of technology.”
I am waiting to finish the book, absorb all the learning and implement the matching of technology and my values. I hope to succeed.

So where does the Corona Virus fit in? I must confess that I had no intention of making a “Boolean AND” of both these topics. But it just struck me – that if we value good health and cleanliness, there IS a connection. Focus on sleep, exercise and the right eating, and use enough technology to do that, and of course your work. Mindless use of social media should not be part of our lives! Get minimalistic with technology for your health.

And now a bit about the Corona Virus from a QMed perspective.
For any health professional who wants to track the latest about the Corona Virus Disease, here is a link to all medical references through PubMed. This search strategy has been provided by the National Library of Medicine, USA, in their NLM Technical Bulletin, updated in March 2020. And just as I finish writing the post, another librarian friend – Pam Sieving, alerted me to another resource provided by the HIFA Mailing list . This is – LitCovid and is available at – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/research/coronavirus/ . This has been created by the NIH.

To all health professionals working extra hard during this pandemic – let me sum up by wishing you all tons of good health and best wishes. May the doctor patient relationship go through a big change after this. Let us all have minimalism in our expectations and abundance in our values!

Note: The book discussion event – scheduled for the 21st of March has been postponed because of the Corona situation. But Arati has promised to hold it again once things return to normal. Meanwhile I plan to “maximize” my values by reading the book even more thoroughly!

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