2020 will be known for the Uncertainty of the COVID-19 virus and the racial issues, along with political strife created for those of us living on the planet today. I would like to help by providing some coping mechanisms and awareness in order to lessen some of the stress.
First of all, we have been living a life of Uncertainty since the beginning of time. Nothing as far as certainty and predictability has ever been promised to any of us. Think of how suddenly an unexpected event or world situation as up rooted our lives. People get sick and die, we lose jobs, weather patterns create havoc and multiple changes in what we expect, come our way, often. As human beings, many of us hope for consistency and predictability and our social structures were put into place to give us a sense of stability. But I assure you, each day brings something that most of us experience as “ rocking the boat”. Covid 19 did it at a more obvious and dramatic level so that experiences feel intensified.
The opposite of Uncertainty is faith. Faith in a higher power, faith in ourselves, faith in mankind and faith in the healing power of nature. Begin by looking inside. Do you appreciate and allow your body to heal and move towards health by giving yourself healthy food, by going out to exercise in nature and by thinking positive thoughts? That is our first step. Go out and walk barefoot on the grass or sand and feel the healing energy that comes from the earth. Mediate each day even if you start with 5-10 minutes and work up. Walk outside whenever you can. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. Then feel how your body reacts and deals with uncertainty and stress.
Then watch your thoughts. Use stop thoughts when you go down a judgmental or critical pathway. Say to yourself-“Stop”. Then focus on a goal or a positive step you can take. Limit TV and the news. Sing and dance more often. Smile and be kind to strangers and keep a gratitude journal. My facing Your Fears program uses these techniques, so contact me if I can help!
-- Janet Whitney, M.A., LMFT