We understand this is such a hard time. We are feeling it too. We miss our old routine. We miss our freedom to move about our community. We miss the ability to visit and enjoy our family and friends. We miss life as we knew it before the pandemic.
We are collectively experiencing a traumatic response that has left us shaken and afraid. We are in an unknown place with no handbook or end date. You may find yourself not thinking clearly, finding it hard to make decisions, feeling unsure of yourself, and generally feeling more irritable or easily frustrated. The bottom line is that there are many times when you don’t feel like yourself and you don’t like it.
We hear you. And we are here to help guide you with some strategies to help you get through. None of these tips are likely new to you, however, we understand the power of stating the obvious, especially at a time like this when everything feels so uncertain and our thinking may not be as clear as we would like.
Basic Wellness Tips
Our ability to cope is connected to our basic needs. When we neglect these basic needs, our ability to cope will be compromised – so don’t under-estimate the importance of these needs:
- Stay hydrated
- Eat well
- Get outside each day
- Move your body
- Create a routine
- Keep a good sleep schedule
Emotional Self-Care Tips
Staying balanced emotionally may feel impossible. And even if you cannot attend to these important needs as fully as you would like, any of these practices will be helpful:
- Remind yourself that this is temporary
- Practice radical self-acceptance and self-compassion
- Find lightness and humour in each day
- Look for the lessons
- Practice gratitude
Family Togetherness Tips
Most families are not used to spending so much time together. Even though you love your family members you may not love spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with them. If this applies to you, you do not need to feel guilty, but consider using some of these tips to help:
- Find your own retreat space
- Create time to be alone (if there is someone else who can take over if you have family members that require care)
- Consider rising early before the rest of the household to get some quiet time for yourself
- Relax your expectations with use of screen time with children
- Expect behavioural issues in kids. Use simple consequences that have been helpful in the past and focus on maintaining emotional connections with your children
- Create time to really be present with your children, and then create time to just chill out together with low expectations
- Be relaxed about home schooling – it is not worth a power struggle and the resulting negative emotional spiral for everyone involved
- Give everyone the benefit of the doubt and a wide berth – everyone is doing their best, even if it may not appear to be the case
General Wellness Tips
- Limit social media
- Limit exposure to the news
- Find a project you can immerse yourself in
- Reach out for help
Taking small steps can make a difference in how you feel. However, if you, your relationship or a family member is struggling, you don’t have to face this alone. We are here to provide support designed to help you feel better quickly.
Call us today at 613-848-3683 to discuss the option that is best for you.
by Mary Joan Brinson MSW, RSW