How to Stay Optimistic even During a Pandemic
I’ve been giving some thought to how to respond to the current Covid-19 crisis. What can a travel lifestyle blogger write about when the whole world seems to be in lockdown? What value can I add to your day when I’m not even sure how to respond to this myself?
As a result of this unraveling situation, our lovely road trip in France had to be cut short. I was so disappointed, but what could I do? Safety comes first. On the morning of March 15 I had a gut feeling that it was time to get out. As it turned out, the entire country was put into lockdown two days later, just after we’d headed back through the Eurotunnel.
While this health crisis has been an inconvenience and hassle to those of us whose plans and future have been interrupted, it’s been devastating to those who’ve lost their lives or livelihoods.
The idea we can’t go where we choose right now feels weird. We’re so used to being able to travel the world it feels odd we can’t even walk to the corner pub.
Loss of Freedom is Real, at Least for Now.
This lockdown has triggered my fear of losing my freedom. It’s precisely why I was so bummed out when my plans were interrupted. When will I be free to return to France and visit the places I was looking forward to exploring? When will I have time and opportunity again?
I think we can all muscle through the next few months if we know there’s the possibility of returning to a normal life soonish. Something to look forward to on the other side of this pandemic, right?
We all need hope. Without it life can seem flat and meaningless. Days can seem endless without the fizz of possibility and joy!
How to Stay Positive
Possibility is the key to keeping my mental and emotional health ticking over. How about you? I believe we all need something to look forward to. Whether it’s a walk on the beach, anticipating new travels, seeing loved ones or planting seeds with the hopeful expectation they’ll flourish and grow.
Does the idea of being socially isolated freak you out because your motivation comes from interaction with others? If that’s what you look forward to, it can be devastating to lose that connection.
Even if you’re an accomplished introvert like me and totally comfortable in your own company, it feels different to know your choices are limited to A. staying at home, B staying in or C not going out!
A Simple Solution to Manage Our Fear and Emotions
Frankly I’m struggling along with you. I love my freedom! I don’t like to be told what to do anyway (authority complex big time) and now we’re not supposed to travel or be social, I’m finding it tough to conform.
But I know I can get through this and you can too love. The answer is within us.
That’s what we’ve got to lean on during this freaky time of unprecedented change and uncertainty. The one thing we do have choice over is our thoughts.
What if we tune our thoughts into the outcomes we want while tuning out negative news and fear? What if we leave ourselves open to the possibility everything will be OK?
How to Soothe and Take Care of Yourself
- Focus on what you can do today. Try not to worry about a future that hasn’t happened
- Remember to breathe. When you feel yourself getting wound up and tense, stop and take some slow breaths in and out.
- When fearful thoughts start ramping up, remind yourself that where you are right now is safe.
- Honor your introversion or extroversion. There are no should’s. Connect to others in ways that feel normal to you.
- Remind yourself that you’ve been through tough times before. You’ll get through this too.
- Filter the news. For now consider just dipping in once a day to keep aware of vital announcements
Use this handy journal to help you keep track of your dreams & desires
The Future is Ours to Plan
What if we all raised our collective consciousness to be positive and optimistic about the future. Like the survivors we are!
It’s important to take the steps right now to assure everyone of us stays healthy and safe. But even in temporary lockdown, it doesn’t mean our inner lives can’t flourish.
Yes we’re being challenged enormously by this thing, but we have the power to overcome it. Both physically and mentally.
If we act as if we’ve already got this thing licked, don’t you think our immune system and mental health will reap the benefits?
Let’s visualize life getting back to normal. Yes it may be a new normal for a while, but even with potential restrictions in place, we can embrace doing what we love; sharing with loved ones and exploring the world again. I’ve had to cancel get togethers with family I’d planned. Yes it’s disappointing but I trust I’ll be able to see them soon.
Why not plan as if the time to spread our wings is already here? We can create vision boards. Get out our guide books, and start planning our next trip or adventure. It’s not like we don’t have the time 😉
It’s Not the Time to Hold Our Breath.
I know when I hold my breath it signals fear and feeling stuck. The simple act of breathing calms our souls and bodies. So let’s keep breathing. In and out. Knowing deep down we’ll be okay. Knowing we still have the power to create a future filled with possibility and joy.
That power lives inside us and can’t be taken away.
When I read on Instagram about someone cancelling their trip to France next year, I thought, oh no. That feels like not moving forward with faith and trust but giving into fear and shutting down the future.
Instead why don’t we summon our faith to visualize how healthy and happy we’ll be in the very near future?
There has never been a better time to practice breathing and monitoring your thoughts to let go of fear. I know it’s challenging, but please trust you and your loved ones will be OK.
In my head I’m visualizing myself heading back to France – I already have the plans! What would you start planning today if you believed?