As a mental health practitioner and advocate, there’s always a need to support one another and to use creative methods to show support. Being self-aware is also an ongoing process to monitor your own stress level and compassion satisfaction levels. Around the world, many people are working on the frontlines helping to defend us against this invisible pandemic and many others sit on the sidelines eagerly wanting to help.
In talking to colleagues, friends, and family, it occurred to me that some of us are not feeling stressed and are maybe feeling some guilt. There might also be some “shame” associated with the idea of having a stress-free life as some have the ability to work from home, have access to technology, have a home to live in, etc. This public health disparity is becoming more apparent as the unemployment rate increases as well as our uncertainty for the immediate and distant future.
All of this to say, it’s important to find balance. Yes- it’s great to be stress-free, but as long as we don’t lose insight into the reality of those who are struggling. This is the tricky balance of managing your own emotions, caring for others, and being aware of both local and global issues around us. This theme continues with our media consumption. Needing to be aware, sensitive, and educated about the current events but we must carefully consume it at a rate that doesn’t fill up your mental space.
- Help Others: Find ways to help (even if it’s remotely)
- Passions: Fuel your passions (garden, cooking, watching old family videos, puzzles)
- Talk: Either by phone, email, letters, video conference (or if you live/work with others you can talk in person).
- Self-Reflection: Be intentional about having some time every day where you can reflect. Depending on your belief system- put into action what works well for you (prayer, meditation, inner-self reflection, mindfulness, etc.)
- Nature: Connect with our earth and the natural world- this might sound silly but give it a try, and cherish the beauty around us.