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5 tips for staying positive and creative in isolation

Apr 30, 2020

Matthew Lee, instructor at MIAD, spent 13 months at the Geographic South Pole for Antarctic winter to learn field medicine and teach watercolor classes. Last Friday during a virtual meetup hosted by the MIAD Innovation Center, he shared about his experience and advice for staying positive and creative in isolation.

1. Connect with people.
In Antarctica, Matthew taught others how to watercolor, watched movies and played trivia together. Technology allows you to be together with others without being in the same room. Take the time, and use technology to talk to friends and family.

2. Don’t count days.
Counting the days was not allowed at the South Pole. This causes a negative outlook and days to seem slow. “Time passes much better if you’re not documenting that way,” says Matthew. “Measure it in terms of projects.”

3. Control your media intake.
On social media, Matthew follows only content that he enjoys. Reducing the amount of negative media you consume and share will help you stay positive along with others around you.

4. Exercise.
“It makes a world of difference. It’s really helpful mentally and physically,” says Matthew. A quick walk around the block or at-home yoga are good examples. 

5. Find a project and take time to be more creative.
Finding a project to do gives you a sense of purpose and enables creativity to continue flowing. At the South Pole, Matthew completed graphic design projects; right now, his focus is on MIAD and his students.