Common Challenges during Covid-19
Our lives have drastically shifted as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. 2020 has been deemed an unprecedented year and having been tough for most or all of us, we are all in this together, globally. We’ve had to make major changes to our daily routines, change plans, work from home if we’ve kept our jobs, experience unemployment, home-school children, and have the sudden lack of physical contact with family and friends. While we have become adaptive, we are designed for connection. These shifts have enticed inner and outer struggles, emotional upheaval and difficulties with mental health and emotional states.
Though introverts may find some comfort in spending more inward time at home and extroverts may find it more challenging from a lack of outward activity, the disruption in routine and life rhythms affects us all. This year has delivered unprecedented struggles for relationships including the one we have with ourselves, our partners and the world at large. But, it’s like any other struggle we find ourselves in where we cannot control the outcome or timeline. We must revisit old strategies and cultivate new skills in order to persevere.
Many of our previous coping strategies have no longer been an available outlet; meeting a friend for coffee, attending a yoga class, or getting out for a change of scene. So perhaps more than ever, we’ve been forced to sit with fear, emotions and the unknown. The bottom line to remember is, you are not alone in this, and some of the most common challenges during the Covid pandemic have been reported as:
Absorbing other people’s feelings
Feeling at the mercy of top down information that you don’t know if you can trust - the unknown
Fear – worry over health, finances, the status of loved ones and life in general, not to mention those who are currently in unhealthy situations without the ability to change it
Avoidance of feelings because they are just too big to sit with and feeling a sense of hopelessness
Seeing no choices or options to move forward.
Being limited from many directions
Having anxiety and undirected, pent up energy
Healthy and simple emotional tips for wellness during the pandemic:
Stay informed but not overly involved to cause distress. Limit news to once or twice a day as appropriate.
Keep up with basic self-care routines and personally hygiene. Be creative if need be to take extra good care of yourself.
Exercise regularly – move your body in a way that you enjoy, daily.
Establish and keep a routine that works for you. Get enough sleep at night, waking and going to sleep at regular times.
Limit screen time and social media feeds. Do not scroll your feed first thing in the morning or just before bed.
Nature – step outside while distanced away from others. Take time to breathe and have conscious awareness of the simplest of miracles.
Lovingly and intentionally prepare your food, either for yourself or family members. Try new, healthy recipes.
Express gratitude for life, to your higher power, yourself and others.
Be present with loved ones. Make eye contact. Listen. Face-time or pick up the phone and call.
Give yourself things to look forward to. Make plans for something enjoyable for certain times or days of the week and stick to them.
Make time for things that you enjoy. Try a new hobby.
Set an intention or goal and follow through on all steps of the plan.
Offer to do something for others who may need help.
Establishing a new solid routine takes time. . .let’s be patient and compassionate with ourselves.
“A contraction is an expansion waiting to happen. It just needs to be unpacked a little first.” – Diane Poole Heller, Ph.D.