We are experiencing situations and feelings we have never had to deal with before. Living in this prolonged state of uncertainty can create anxiety that manifests itself differently in all of us, and it’s perfectly okay to feel that way. You’re not alone. At , we believe that part of successful aging means identifying the best ways and methods to deal with unprecedented and stressful situations. So it’s okay to take a break from the news, social media, or neighbors who are discussing current events.
Continual worry or having a hyper-analytical mindset can feed the stress and lead to obsessive thinking and anxiety. Accepting that we don’t have control over the pandemic or other people is how we begin to diminish our stress. We might understand this intellectually, but on an emotional level we could find ourselves still having trouble accepting things and exhibiting the same stress induced behaviors. This is normal. Acceptance is a day-by-day process. Knowing ourselves helps us in managing this process. Also, engaging ourselves with practices that support letting go of worry and overthinking helps us experience and accept emotions as they come. A good motto for these times is, “Don’t think, just be in the moment and appreciate the blessings in your life”.
Greater acceptance starts with self-acceptance. Why not take this time to be kind to yourself, forgive your perceived shortcomings, and focus on selfcare? Then you can extend that kindness to others by checking in on family and friends who might be lonely or struggling. Sometimes we just need someone to listen to us and say, “I understand”. Think about who you want to reach out to and let them know you have been thinking about them. Also, don’t hesitate to look for support. This is a way to give someone else the opportunity to feel useful. Any gesture of kindness and compassionate toward someone else gives us that same gift.
We may not know the answers to all our questions about the future, but we can work together to accept it and together we will get through this rough patch.