Written By: Evan Vukets, Registered Clinical Counsellor
As we enter another week experiencing the effects of COVID-19, it is important to spend some time assessing how it has been affecting us. That may sound paradoxical, as it can be easier to avoid problems. It is common to even feel guilty addressing issues when others objectively have it worse. With social media updates and hourly news headlines, it is not hard to see the suffering of others right now. Take some time to recognize your own feelings so you can process them and not shelf them.
When we shelf feelings or problems we do not allow ourselves to work through them, but they still negatively affect us. If you have not lost a job or know anyone personally that has become sick, this pandemic has still affected you. We can give ourselves permission to grieve the missed things we have been working towards, planning for, and were excited about. It is important that we intentionally take time to acknowledge what we have gone through, so we can accurately understand how we have been affected. If we spend a disproportionate time focusing on words of anxiety and fear but downplay the personal impact in our mind, we can get caught in circles of unhealthy coping. If we spend days watching Netflix or scrolling social media to feel better the core problem is not addressed, and negative feelings will still linger.
One of the main issues stemming from this pandemic is the newness of social distancing. Schedules have been rapidly altered which has made it hard to keep focused. Creating a daily schedule can bring a lot of clarity back into your day. You can still include Netflix and social media but remember to not leave out activities for your mental health. Schedule a call or connection with someone from your support system, practice self-care, try new relaxation techniques, practice hobbies you have been meaning to try, explore free online classes. Try to pick a few things each day and check them off, studies show that this simple act can increase motivation and self-esteem.
History tells us that this is survivable, and that this is a time to overprotect but not overreact. While it may feel like this is a new reality, it is a temporary state and it helps to say it. Use this time to try new things and remember to maintain the things in your life that bring joy.
Our counsellors can help you to understand and assess what feelings this time brings forth in your life. Through that insight, we can tailor techniques to your individual challenges. We work through stress, relationship conflicts, depression, anxiety, trauma, and many other mental health concerns. If you would like to book an appointment with Evan give Cheam Wellness Group a call at 604-776-2432 or check out our online booking page www.cheamwellnessgroup.janeapp.com/login