For most of us, the coronavirus pandemic is the most drastic situation we have ever experienced in our lifetime. It has affected every facet of our lives whether you are young or old, rich or poor. This virus has forced us to go through stages of grief over loss of our normal life – our routines, finances, work and our general feeling of well-being.
Some of us are fortunate enough to be healthy, both physically and mentally. Having great friends and family relationships also contribute to a better outlook during these very trying times. But even these lucky people need to take steps to keep their anxiety and feelings of loss manageable as they avoid the virus. It’s basically the same advice that works during normal times: getting good sleep, eating well and exercising. Getting outside in the fresh air and noticing nature helps too. When we feel stress, we tend to have shallow breathing so deep breathing 3 times a day can calm anxiety. It’s a simple thing that takes only a few minutes.
Make a plan
Just making a plan on how to protect yourself from the virus, staying active and productive can contribute to your sense of well-being and a feeling of more control. We know that people need to stay apart physically to slow the spread of the virus, but the term social distancing feels a little negative to me and I am an introvert. I prefer to think of it as creating safe zones or extended personal space.
We are strong and have the ability to get through this virus pandemic. The hardest part is the uncertainty. But if you think about it, we always have uncertainty, it’s just not so obvious to us as it is right now. It is normal to mourn the inability to make firm plans or anticipate vacations, weddings, graduation or whatever happy times are on your list. But, remember, you can continue to make plans, they just won’t have a definite date on them yet.
For the less fortunate that have poor mental health or are alone without family support, the anxiety level about this virus can be paralyzing. When even the healthiest of us may feel a little depressed right now, imagine how they feel. Reach out by phone, text or email and be there for them as much as you can.
These difficult times will pass. How will you look back on it? Did you become closer to your family? Did you figure out what is most important in your life? Did you use this isolated time well? If nothing else, let’s remember that we all went through it together.
When you get back to business as usual
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