The last couple weeks have been rough for everyone. Uncertainty, change, fear, health. All of those things have been at the top of everyone’s minds. I’m right there with all of you. I’ve had a couple times where I was panicked. Is my baby sick? I need to make sure I have food. (I’m good on toilet paper!) I absolutely had my freak out moments of what could happen, or what might happen. Then I got some sense talked into me, by a couple people.
So I guess, set a timer on your phone, or whatever you use. 15 min is how long you have to have a “This sucks” pity party. Because yes, it sucks. It all sucks. We have to stay inside for the most part. We have to stay away from most everyone for an indefinite period of time. Our activities, our schedules, our routines. Every cancelled. The things that ground us, the people that keep us sane, the things that keep us moving forward. All those things were flipped upside down really quickly. What the hell do we do? Seems like we all did the same thing. Panick, freak out, and turn on the news. I did a little of that myself.
Those conversations I had, they went a little like this: What can you do about it? It all happened, its done. You can be responsible for yourself and your family. At the end of the day, there are things you cannot control. What can’t you control? Other people. What they do, say, how they act, what they choose to do. You can’t control the things going on right now, you can’t control what happens to the world, your job or the way it operates may be different. The activities you partake in may be different. YOu can’t control that schools are closed.
So lets start with other people: Others will do what they want no matter what you may thing, or tell them. People will do things that may piss you off. I would guess they don’t care what you think. People will disregard the current government sanctions and requests and go places and do things they aren’t supposed to. Here’s a concept that was probably introduced to you as a kid. Worry about yourself. What good does worrying do about anything? MOst of the time, it just sends us into a black hole of getting worked about things we can’t control and we end up thinking about the worst possible outcome of something that hasn’t happened yet. Easier said than done, yes. Yes it is.
Getting pissed off because people aren’t doing what they are supposed to is only hurting you, possibly changing the tone of your residence to very tense. If everyone did their part and did it perfectly, that would be great. That will never happen. Accept that.
Most people deal with change pretty horribly. We get stuck in a comfortable routine. When something happens and that gets disrupted, we have no idea what to do. Almost a deer in the headlights moment. We get paralyzed, fear and panic set in and all of the sudden we’re in a tail spin. If we can learn to take a deep breath and figure out how to deal with what we have and make the best of it, we might come out a little stronger.
This might mean some hard changes for everyone individually. Schools are cancelled, parents everywhere are having to figure out how to keep their kids learning and on the right track. Thank goodness for technology and all the teachers and resources that a evolving to help you. Yes, all of this makes some daily routines get thrown out the window, and that sucks. Is it going to change? Most likely not. People may need to change their work situations. A lot of jobs may not operate the same if they are still there. It sucks, but that’s reality.
Everyone is out of the current comfort zone. Everyone. A lot of people feel so very alone because they are stuck inside. There are tragic things happening right now, there is no question on that. So instead of sitting and sulking (more than 15 min). Figure out something that can be productive. Get your updates from reputable sources and stop reading every rant.
The past couple years have taught me this:
1. Be mindful about what you put in your mind. Are you sitting watching the news or social media all day or a much bigger portion than normal? We have enough negative usually let alone right now. Find something positive to listen to. Comedy? Maybe get into some personal development? Lots of good YouTube videos to watch.
2. Move. IF you’ve been sitting for a prolonged time. Just get up, walk around for ten min. Even if you hate exercise, just get up and go somewhere else. A different room. OUtside. Go get the mail, do something. Go for a short drive if you can.
3. Distance yourself from people who have nothing good to say. It seems people just want to think and talk about how crappy all of this is, how much of a pain the in butt it is. We can only take so much before we’re just in a crap mood.
4. Figure out some future plans. Yes, its hard to schedule anything. Make a plan of things you want to accomplish.
5. those lovely electronic devices we’re glued to. Use it to your advantage. I know a lot of people who have had a lot of fun doing virtual happy hour. There are so many apps to help with that. Audio books, or actual books.
6. My time has recently been realocated in different areas. My kids nap times have been changing by the week making my “me time” very spotty. If I can find pockets of time to give myself some needed time, I bet you can. Get some things done while you “have” to be at home that will go right back out the window when everything gets back to the new normal.
Use this opportunity, as crappy as the circumstances are, to find positive changes in your life. You may have to cut back on things and prioritize a little different, the sooner you start, the easier it will get.
One last thing. Communicate with people. The people you are isolated with. Even thought we may think everyone know what everyone else is thinking. I can almost guarantee that’s not true. Talk to people, even thought the main problem is global wide, it affects everyone different. You may have no idea what one person or the next is stressed about. Be grateful for the people working their asses off and putting themselves in harms way to keep your pantry and fridge as stocked as possible. Tell them you apricate them. Grocery stores, healthcare facilities are working above and beyond so that we can get this crap under control and you get back to your lives. Be appreciative of what people ARE doing for you. Be vocal to people who are working their butts off for you.