Jennifer Gillette Shares Her Professional Perspective Regarding Isolation and Staying the Course.
Are you beyond done?
As you talk with people, scroll social media, or listen to the news, you're likely to witness people feeling discontent with the current restrictions and squirrelly from being home for so long. Many are trying to find ways to battle loneliness and for others, there is also the loss of life and jobs.
Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, most people miss connecting with others in their normal daily routines. Many of us are being called to stay home and perhaps are starting to get on each other’s nerves a bit with the increase in time together. Others are in a health crisis and completely overwhelmed by their journey through such a trying time. Whatever your experience is, it is certainly normal to be feeling done with this pandemic. Unfortunately, it is not over yet, so developing perseverance is key to staying healthy through this process.
Ways to develop perseverance:
Try to adjust your attitude
. Consider things you wish you had time to do before this pandemic. Most people have more time to do some of those things now. What gifts have come from this extra time at home? Have you had more quality time with loved ones? Have you seen the impact on the environment? As Anne Frank said, “Don't think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains.”
Find your purpose during this time.
an interesting article recently on how astronauts survived isolation in space. One of the tips: they focused on what their higher purpose was in being there. When times gets rough, remember what your goals are or why we are doing all of this.
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It is so important to eat well, exercise, and get enough sleep. Our routines ground us, and healthy habits give us the best versions of ourselves to cope. Stay up-to-date through reputable sources on protections recommended to avoid the virus and specific instructions from your provider, if you are at a higher risk or immunocompromised.
Exercise compassion towards others
. Thinking outside of your needs not only helps others, but it helps you get your focus off your own struggles for a while.
Take it a moment at a time
. Thinking about more weeks or months of this pandemic is overwhelming. Focus on getting through today, this afternoon, or even just this hour.
Develop a new passion such as a hobby or adopt a pet.
Being able to refocus on something other than your frustrations will allow you to find more joy in your day.
Reach out if you need help.
There are many tele-health options for counseling even if offices are still closed. Your insurance can give you referrals to participating providers.
Feed your faith daily.
That which YOU feed grows!
Be aware of resources to get through this, including the nbmtLINK.
Many organizations have assistance for food, finances, support, and more. Here is one great site with a compiled resource listing that is specifically helpful for cancer patients during this COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here for these mentioned resources.
Make time for down time and time to laugh
. Plan a Zoom call with friends to play a game, FaceTime a loved one, or watch some funny shows or movies.
Remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint.
This pandemic has put “more weight on the bar” for everyone in some way. However, we can choose to persevere, to invest in better tomorrows for ourselves and those we love. Once we can treat the most severe symptoms effectively, this virus will not have the power it currently has. We need to be strong as the world experts lead this charge. Then, we can work to reclaim what we can from all this virus took from us.
The National Bone Marrow Transplant Link is providing additional pandemic programming. See our next article for more information on our upcoming May 7 Lunch & Learn on COVID-19. We also have our April 2 COVID-19 program available as a podcast available through our Marrow Masters series.
As the LINK’s licensed staff social worker, I am also available to provide a mentor (buddy) for you or one-on-one time to chat. I can be reached at email@example.com. Be well.