No matter who you are it is such a wonderful thing to talk to people. During a pandemic phone conversations are essential. Talking to someone can really brighten their day. Especially if you are talking to someone who lives alone or even if they are married. They need someone to talk to as well. So please don’t be afraid to talk to someone on the phone.
Why Is it Important to Talk?
As human beings we really do like human interaction. We like to laugh and tell stories and listen to people’s advice. Although it can be difficult at times to connect to people if you are home, it is so worth it. It can seem like a waste of time but it’s really not. It’s important to use our voices to communicate our thoughts and feelings. Having a human to connect with is essential for humans to thrive. Also speaking is a skill which must be cultivated.
But, I Don’t Have Any Friends
That might be true that you don’t have friends but there is usually someone you can text and just say hi. Then if you feel comfortable asking them if it’s OK to call them. If you are having a difficult time, you can tell them you are seeking counseling and if they would be interested in talking to you. It really does help if you can meet people from a church. All you have to say is you want to talk about Jesus and they will come talk to you in a hurry. Now it doesn’t have to be Christianity but I’m just saying you can find friends in Churches. Don’t be afraid to reach out. Plus once you start talking to your friend then you realize they are going through challenging times too and you know you aren’t alone.
So What Should I Talk About?
Do you ever feel like you don’t know what to say to someone? When you talk do you know how to start a conversation? Some suggestions are here:
How’s your summer going?
What have you been up to?
This pandemic is so weird, how are you doing?
I watched this really good movie, have you heard of this movie?
You get the idea. With these questions the conversation will start flowing. And then you will get a chance to talk too. It’s kind of like a verbal tennis match if it’s a good conversation.
Picking Up The Phone Can Truly Save a Life
These are odd times and people may feel vulnerable. So talking to a friend can give them the hope and encouragement they need to make it through another day. It makes the difference between them feeling supported and connected to alone and sad. There are times to be alone and strong but there are also times when it’s great to connect and try to laugh if possible. There’s plenty to laugh at if you look for funny stuff.
If you have ever been to any support groups and someone will say, “Hurt People, Hurt People.” And yes it’s true but whenever someone says it, you feel like telling them to STFU. It’s been said too many times and it’s just like not a good answer. All you know is a person hurt you and you want them to suffer A LOT for the terrible thing they did to you. And then when you realize all the stuff the Hurt Person had to deal with, it makes sense that they are so mean.
What Are Things You Can Do That Will Actually Help Change a Situation?
Making a plan is so therapeutic. You can write down what happened and figure out your next plan of action. Of course you can complain and cry and suffer endlessly or you can take all of that frustration and try to turn it into a workable plan for you. You can figure out how you can change things a little so you can start to create a better life.
For some reason getting up and moving around helps you to feel better. Start to clean up your physical environment, put away laundry, throw out trash, dust, pulling weeds will help you to accomplish something and you will feel better after you are done. It’s difficult to clean someone else’s mess. So why not focus on your own mess and let them clean up their own mess for a minute. You can help someone clean their mess but perhaps you have things you need to accomplish for yourself. There’s nothing wrong with helping others but make sure to take care of yourself too.
Turn OFF Electronics!!!
I’ll let you marinate on this for a while. It’s your own call. Why don’t you pretend it’s 1994 and put your phone away and listen to the Radio, read a book, take a walk, draw, color, play an instrument and you got it!! For some reason technology is SOOOO draining. DUMP IT!!
How About Cooking Something?
It’s been a while but maybe try cooking something. Perhaps your favorite dish. That will make you feel better. For some reason Oatmeal Cookies just keep popping up… so let’s make some oatmeal cookies. Dig out a recipe to start. Then see what ingredients you need. It’s not that hard.
It’s a drag to do cardio but somebody has to do it for you so it may as well be you. It’s time to torch off that pandemic weight gain. You can do it!! Just start a little at a time and you’ll be back.
TURN OFF NEWS
If you need to know something, someone will tell you. You might be traumatized by the news and or addicted to the drama associated with the news. You might need professional help or a support group.
That’s It For Now. Take care and Be Extra Nice To EVERYONE.
“I Don’t Think There’s a Feeling You’re Having That I Can’t Validate.” Janice in Terms of Endearment
No matter who you are this pandemic is having an effect on you. From the children who are suddenly at home from school, to the workers who are suddenly out of a job to the people who have contracted coronavirus, this isn’t a joke. This is a historical moment in history and whatever you’re feeling, you are entitled to feel that way.
This is a dynamic situation that is very much changing moment to moment and day to day. For those of us that are given the great privilege to shelter in place, consider yourself among the most privileged. Nobody said privileged was easy. And however you choose to deal with it is definitely up to you. On social media you can get a feeling for how people are coping. There are people who are drinking alcohol to lots of comfort eating and lots of fear is undeniable.
I Got Accused of Spreading Panic
I didn’t publish anything on my website regarding my views because it wasn’t publish worthy. After all the leaders were saying this was a hoax. But I was posting on social media about washing hands and sounding the alarm because many of my friends were running around going to plays, using public transportation and just enjoying their life but there was the corona virus beginning to spread and I wanted my friends to know that it was coming and what they can do to protect themselves. It was a stress response for me to feel that I was doing something. I don’t regret doing this but now I feel that people are now taking this issue seriously for the most part so I’ve decided to let this go. I just didn’t want to see my friends get sick because I didn’t say something.
So How Are You Doing?
You really have to look at your behavior. I talk to many people and they act like they are so cool. Like nothing is bothering them. I’m like really? Do you realize what’s happening? Maybe they are numb. Maybe they don’t know how to cope so they just don’t feel anything. But in any case we are all entitled to our own feelings. And how other people are coping shouldn’t really be too much of your concern. Of course if your child is upset, you want to comfort them or if someone you love wants to talk about their feelings you can listen. But for the most part the only person you can really have any influence over is yourself.
What Are You Doing During This LockDown?
Well you really do have many options. You can eat whatever you want, you can watch whatever you want on TV, you can read whatever you want and so forth. But the actions you take can have very different effects on your life. If you stress eat while watching news and drinking alcohol, you might end up gaining alot of weight and maybe become an alcoholic which can have tragic consequences.
Or you can still be really concerned about what’s happening and maybe decide that you really can’t deal with this and you can give it over to your higher power. Just really ask God to take the burden and like a boss, he will. That’s what I chose to do because I was freaking out to be quite honest.
You’re Literally Not Alone
Everyone else in the whole world is coping with this situation. So there are many people you can talk to about this situation. If your friends and family aren’t encouraging, find a support group on line or get professional help. There are many resources available to assist you. This is an unusual time but we will get through this.
Ask Yourself What You Can Do
Since many people have to stay at home, the best thing to do is to establish a routine. Wake up around the same time (but don’t beat yourself up if you struggle with this.) Stay hydrated no matter what and start to make a list of some things you enjoy doing. Also a list of things that have to get done like laundry and dishes. Look around and see if there are any special projects that you can contemplate working on. Cleaning is an essential function as well as laundry and some sort of food preparation and or going out for food.
There’s Nothing Wrong With Prayer
Prayer is very powerful. It not only helps the people that are praying but it also helps the people you are praying for. So do me a favor and say a prayer for the your loved ones, for a vaccine and for all of the essential workers that are really taking care of us during this difficult time. If you are fortunate enough to shelter in place we really do owe them a lot of appreciation. Maybe reach out to one of your essential worker friends and family and let them know you care.
It’s OK to Have Fun
I’ve been called a party monkey back in the day. What can I say other than I like to have fun. So I choose to listen to great music and dance and sing. On March 31, 2020 it was JS Bach’s 335th Birthday. I did a video to celebrate. This is a great piece of music. This is what I do for fun but you can surely enjoy or do whatever you enjoy.
Have you ever had to get over a broken heart from a relationship? It can be one of the most painful things to endure. It’s like your heart gets ripped out of your body and you’re supposed to walk around like everything is normal on the outside. But on the inside you’re so sad, depressed and you can also be filled with feelings of anger and rage depending on the circumstances of the break up. There can also be real serious issues such as alimony, child support and loss of income. But let’s just pretend it’s just a normal break up. Also assume that there are no legal consequences and you won’t be in financial turmoil because that’s just too much to deal with in a single blog post.
Establish a Support
It’s time to call your network of support. Friends, family, psychological support and anyone else you trust to tell your story. Just be honest about what happened. You have 24 hours to create this network because you don’t want to just keep talking about this issue for weeks which can turn into years. You can have more than 24 hours to set this up but the whole point is that you don’t want to get over this relationship. The longer you continue to discuss it and rehash the hash, the longer it will continue. Tell your network, “I need support getting over this relationship. Can you help me do this?” 9 times out of 10 they will say, “Yes, I’ve got your back. What can I do to help you.” You need emotional support only. This isn’t a smear campaign and you don’t have to share every gory detail. Just say you need support getting over this relationship and leave it at that. Of course you can tell the whole story but just know the more you continue to discuss it, the more you are breathing life into a dead relationship.
There are Different Levels of BreakUP
Perhaps you need to develop a relationship with yourself instead of giving everything to a relationship. Perhaps you want to keep the lines of communication open because there’s a possibility you might get back together. Perhaps you just need to establish firm boundaries within the relationship. So we’ll start out there and then go to the point where you are literally DONE with the relationship. NO WAY will you go back!!
Stage 1 (Keeping Options Open)
Now perhaps your partner is ignoring you and not giving you the time of day. You still love eachother but it’s not working for you. You spend your time obsessing about when you will hear from them and crying because they don’t text you back like they used to. Something is wrong and you don’t know what to do. What do you do?
Answer: Call your network and tell them you need support. You must decide what it is that you want for yourself. So what do you want? Tell your partner in an I statement. “I have decided to start taking care of my health. I am going to start walking and eating more healthy.” As an example. If they don’t respond back that’s their choice but you will still allow them to remain in your life for 30 days. After you send that final text give them 30 days to respond. If they don’t respond within 30 days BLOCK THEM on your phone. If they want to get a hold of you, they can send you an email. Now during this 30 days you will need to start new habits. Perhaps it’s a great time to start a new hobby or maybe just start to clean up your place. Stay busy. Read books, watch movies, connect with friends but under no circumstances are you to contact them. After the 30 days you will have more clarity about how you want to move forward.
My Heart is Broken but I Cannot Stay
If you are done and ready to move on you will need your network. You will need a journal and perhaps professional help. You are going to have to go 30 days with no contact from this individual. It’s most recommended that you block them from your phone and cut off all communication. You will miss them. You will cry. You will want to call them to tell them something funny. During those times that you want to contact them, pull out the journal and write down your feelings. Call someone from your network and tell them how you’re doing. If you are feeling anxious or depressed, contact your Dr.
It’s during times like this that singing and dancing can really help you to feel better. You have to get your endorphins going to help you feel better. Avoid alcohol and drugs because they don’t really help on the long run. They are just a big nasty band aid that is only going to make you feel worse later. Later you are sad and hungover. It’s better to just feel your feelings and then the next day you will feel better day by day. Again emphasis on cardio. Start easy and try to do something you enjoy. Listen to upbeat happy music. Watch a happy movie!! It will get better baby but one thing is for sure, you won’t be putting up with treatment that is unbecoming of you.
Have you ever woke up in the morning with so much to do that you don’t even know where to get started. Your thoughts include, “I have to put away the dishes, and then take a shower, get ready for work and after work take my kid to the Dr. And that project is due and I have to work with that bitch I can’t stand. I wonder if my boss really hates me?” You lie there thinking these thoughts over and over and meanwhile the clock is going tick tock tick tock and you’re not getting anything done.
And if it’s your day off then the to do list is just a little different but you’re still thinking about all the chores and what are you going to make for breakfast and it can begin to drive you a little nutty.
And sometimes the thoughts have to do with the thoughts. “Why am I thinking this? Is there something wrong with me? Am I sick? What does it mean when I feel pressure on my chest?” On and on and on.
Well guess what? These thoughts will not just go away by osmosis. But what also won’t go away are all of the plans you have and things you want to do. So what you have to do is have a plan when you wake up with all of thoughts that are somewhat paralyzing.
You can just say yeah yeah to the thoughts. And tell them what Scarlett O Hara said in Gone With the Wind, “I’ll think about that tomorrow.” The trick is that you have to have a plan. You just have to get up and start your day. Now if it’s 2:00 AM and you went to bed at midnight and you are waking up, you might not want to get up. But if you went to bed at 10 and it’s 4:00 AM, well guess what, it’s time to start your day. That’s right. Get your ass up out of bed and make it.
When you wake up early and everyone else is asleep, this is the hour that God is calling you. It is the time when everyone else is asleep and it’s quiet. When you wake up early it is the perfect time for meditation and yoga. It’s also in the rhythm with the natural circadian rhythm of our bodies. Our bodies naturally want to wake up early. They also want to go to sleep when it’s dark.
Because we have only had electricity within the last 100 plus years, our bodies have not really adjusted to it. We’re still hard wired like our ancestors. Which means we rise when the sun does and we go to sleep when the sun goes down.
So our bodies get out of sync and that’s when the anxiety starts up because our body is warning us that we are pushing ourselves too hard. But you can turn it around.
You have to treat yourself like you are a baby. Which is a perfect time to read an article on how to properly care for yourself here.
This is a super quick post. But I am kind of just being really short with this post because to be honest, I can write quite a bit and it seems like people have short attention spans and just want the info really quick. So I am just getting this out fast.
So do people like information really fast and direct or do they prefer lots of detail. That’s the question. Please feel free to let me know. Because I really would love some input. That’s me asking for help. Because when you need help, PLEASE ASK!!!!!!!!!!
Valerie is a Yoga Instructor and a Health and Wellness Coach. She lives in Northern California with her daughter and puppy. Please contact her here.