Based on how things are evolving in most parts of the world, we can all safely assume that this crisis caused by the new coronavirus isn’t going to be over any time soon. However, it is crucial that we understand exactly what that means and what it doesn’t mean.
The fact is that for a few more months, maybe even a year or two, our lives won’t be going totally back to normal. There’s a pretty good chance that we won’t be able to go on holiday this year and even going out with friends is simply out of the question at this point. But this doesn’t mean that everything we do now is wasted or with no real purpose. On the contrary, especially during this extraordinary and difficult time, we have a chance to change the course of our lives; we have a chance to discover who we really are and who we truly wish to be.
Self-distancing is harsh and confusing for most of us. We are social beings, so it’s understandable to need to be around other people and laugh and cry and reminisce. Unfortunately, no matter how far along technology has gotten, nothing will ever be able to replace that sacred bond which can often be created between like-minded humans.
Nonetheless, self-distancing might feel a little less bleak if we remember to keep our cool and think positive enough. At its core, this measure is helping all of us stay safe and not get infected with this new virus, and, by not getting infected ourselves, we won’t put any unnecessary burden on our national health systems and the amazing medical workers who are doing everything in their power to actually save lives.
So, let’s just think about this for a moment: we are helping a great deal just by staying home and avoiding physical contact with other people. Probably the most important aspect of self-distancing is taking care of our mental health.
We can all follow a few simple steps in order to stay safe and calm during this time:
1. Follow the hygiene recommendations issued by your local authorities and the World Health Organization (WHO). There is no need to overdo it. Just wash your hands carefully and try to limit to a minimum the number of times you touch your face.
2. Turn off the TV if you feel like you’re getting too much information and it’s causing you to panic. It’s perfectly fine if you are feeling overwhelmed right now but try to focus on the good news a little bit more than you do on the bad news.
3. Talk to your family and friends. Share your thoughts and worries. Don’t isolate yourself completely. Your mind is a dangerous place to explore all by yourself.
4. Read all the books you’ve been dreaming about reading before all this happened. Moreover, libraries are suffering a lot right now so please support your local ones.
5. Eat healthy. Even though it feels like time has stopped and we are living in a continuous weekend, this isn’t the case. We still need to take care of our mind and body and feed ourselves with the healthiest food we can find.
So, to end things on a more positive note, just remember that we are all living through an extraordinary and difficult time right now, but it always gets really dark outside just before the first rays of sunshine light the night sky. Think about those tiny moments in the morning when it gets so dark that it feels as if you’ll never see the light again; and, just like that, with the blink of an eye, it fills up the whole sky again.