It’s been over a month since my roommates have been cloistered in our apartment. When not thinking of new and creative ways to not kill each other, my time has been spent wallowing in our basement watching embarrassing amounts of Always Sunny in Philadelphia or playing hours beyond counting ability of Call of Duty.
This week’s KahnJunction, nonetheless, is the follow up to three weeks ago when I preached the gospel of getting up and dressing in a way that makes you feel good.
It would be an understatement to say that I was diving headfirst into a sea of low expectations. Maybe, I thought to myself, I’d get some more followers on Insta. Or, perhaps, an additional reader of KahnJunction.
Nonetheless, I began my week-long challenge of getting up and dressed– in more than just sweat pants and a hoodie, that is.
Every morning, Leonard (yes, the editor-in-chief who happens to be my roommate) and I would lay out my clothing and have a photoshoot. It’s basically been Instagram influencer orientation.
My attempt to incorporate multiple styles has been a journey with stops at destinations like business casual to street wear to the outfit I later went jogging in.
Almost immediately, I noticed a change. Posting my outfits online caused a significant change in my life.
For the first time in years, I was beating my alarm clock to get out of bed before 7AM. I was beginning to put a dent in the sleep debt racked up from the copious amounts of Always Sunny and Call of Duty. But, it was more than sleep. I began taking walks, cooking, writing, and cooking, all for pleasure. I even took up running again, although you shouldn’t expect me in a marathon anytime soon.
In my last piece, I expressed concern that those of us practicing social distancing are not taking our physical and mental health and well-being seriously enough amidst being trapped in our houses or apartments. For those of us fortunate enough to work from home, it seems that the lines between work and home have become extremely blurred. This is a challenging reality to embrace, but after a week of working from home, I am challenging you to do the same as I have done: post your outfits or find something to do with regularity that motivates you to get out of your bed.
I never would have believed that dressing better would have such an impact on my mental and physical health.
Recently, a friend asked, “How will you come out of coronavirus better?”
For days, I have reflected on this. Coronavirus has taught me the importance of good health and adopting a healthy lifestyle beginning with habits like good sleep, exercise, and strong work/life balance.
So far, 2020 has sucked. Neil Pert is dead. My apartment’s rent has gone up. Not to mention that we’re in a global pandemic ten times worse than the deadliest flu or H1N1.
2020, however, still has potential to not be your worst year (so far). 2020 can be the year you finally decide to start dressing in a way that makes you happy. 2020 can be the year that you decide to learn how to cook. 2020 can be the year that you learn a new language or skill.
The year is far from over. These next few months will be clouded with much uncertainty but we should all be certain that we become the best version of ourselves that we can be.
Benjamin Kahn is a senior writer at the UB Post. He writes a weekly column, KahnJunction.