Don’t panic (just yet) – By @isabellelj1

By Isabelle Johnson


Don’t panic (just yet)


Its 6 a.m. Day 8 of isolation.

I have just woken to finish D&AD, which has been delayed almost two months down to the virus. But we’re carrying on business as usual and we’re getting it done.

So far, I’ve been able to get up each morning and go on a walk outside. This has been my sanity. Last night, we found out we’re in lockdown. The result of which could’ve easily sent me into a downward spiral. But funnily enough, I’m more stressed about finishing my posters more than anything at this moment in time.

I think without the school things would be a lot worse for me at this point for two different reasons. Firstly I am grateful to have something to get up for every morning and to fill my day with interesting thoughts and challenges.

And secondly, I don’t think I’d be coping with the isolation if it hadn’t been for the school. My path since September has been hugely challenging and has tested my character strength as well as my creative ability. I had nights in the first term where I struggled to sleep because I allowed my worries to get the better of me.

But the school has helped me overcome my stresses and maintain perspective. And I learnt there was no room in the course for stress. It forced me to change my mindset that was prone to freaking out over deadlines and the unexpected.  And I think this is why I’m not in turmoil at this point in time.

We had a fantastic masterclass last week on maintaining resilience during the crisis. We were told that the human mind is more able to deal with imminent doom than uncertainty. This really resonated with me because I realised that was why I had allowed myself to become stressed before, because when you enter into SCA there is a lot of uncertainty around partnerships, around figuring out where you want to work, around whether you’ll even get there and whether you’ll do well in your book cries or PBs. There’s a lot which can easily engulf you if you let it. And all of this I’m still grappling with, but I have learned to see it as something to be excited about even if it doesn’t go as smoothly as you’d hoped.

And this is why I am coping with twists and turns a lot better, in whatever shape or size that may be.

There’s always a positive to a negative as they say. I could go on about how much I miss being at Pop and seeing my friends everyday. But why focus on the negative when we still have the school in our lives, even if it’s delivered through Zoom.

I can’t speak for how I’ll be with what we’re about to experience, but I sense we’re in good hands.

London was a tough place and it’s getting tougher. But we’re the lucky ones.

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