A different perspective on freedom

Inspiration Shot April 2020

Worldwide quarantine offers us the opportunity to take a new look at things that we normally take for granted. I have written about freedom many times, and it is usually along the lines of “Enjoy the world while traveling, making your own choices, etc.” Today, more than ever, it turns out that real freedom is in your head and not so much in your circumstances. Below are a few nice examples.

Anne Frank’s video diary

A fantastic initiative from the Anne Frank House. Anne Frank’s famous diary is transformed into a vlog from the Secret Annex ‘Achterhuis’; it’s very realistic and well done. And also so relevant in this day and age, when we find ourselves ‘locked up’ as well. Only we have internet and video games, we can just stand in front of the window, we can make as much noise as we want, we can order food from restaurants and we do not have to hide from Germans (and fellow countrymen) who want to kill us… Good to put things into perspective.
(NB Some countries need a VPN set to the Netherlands to watch these vlogs)

Corona opportunities

This is THE time to see opportunities instead of problems, as I discuss during this interview for a podcast with Huub van Zwieten. We also address the question that I have been asked often lately: what is it like to be tied to one place for someone who is normally never in one place for more than 3 weeks? (Interview is in Dutch)

Benefits of working online

You might find it strange that even as a veteran of online work, I am discovering even more benefits of working online. Because my writing week in Mallorca is cancelled, I decided to hold online workshops on book writing. And how fun and convenient it is!
– People from all over the world can participate.
– I don’t have to wait until I’m back in the Netherlands.
– We all have zero travel time and no travel costs.
– I do not have to rent a venue and do not provide catering: everyone eats or drinks what they want.
– We start on time, we don’t have to wait for traffic jams, parking, etc.
– The breaks are shorter, which is more efficient.
In short: the workshops have much more value than usual. And they are also cheaper.

Write your book in times of Corona

The best Corona memes

When freedom of movement is limited but time and creativity are in abundance, gems like these are created:

Let’s try to take inspiration from this family who, despite being holed up together, make it a real party:

Did you know...?

…that my Jewish grandfather also had to go into hiding during the Second World War? During these years, he made beautiful drawings of everyday scenes in his hiding place. These drawings formed the basis for my book Vrijheid om te worden wie je bent’ which translates to ‘Freedom to be who you are’. Several prominent Dutch people described what freedom and in particular ‘freedom to be who you are’ means to them.

Their conclusion: true freedom is all in your mind. I hope you will find the inspiration and insights to be who you really are, regardless of the circumstances you end up in. What does freedom mean to you?

Where is Esther?

In Miami, we are a few weeks behind the rest of the world. Slowly the USA is beginning to realize how serious the Corona virus is. My dad and I still walk around the golf course every day, but there are fewer and fewer people on the street. I miss the contact with nature. The other day I just jumped into a marina for a swim; afterwards I had difficulty finding a spot to get back out of the water… As an act of resistance, I bought a kayak from Walmart, so that I can still get on the water now and then (but only when the tide comes in, so that distance between the water and the shore is not too big).

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