Everyone is stressed by the Coronavirus. We know it's not caring or helpful if someone tells you, “Don’t be afraid—have faith in God.” This leaves people feeling judged or like they need to put on a happy face.
After the Coronavirus hit, I started contemplating the impact it could have on students, the elderly, families, businesses, churches, charitable organizations...our society as a whole. The uncertainty causes us to be troubled and irritable. Mostly, I tried to focus forward and to keep things as normal as possible. The world is going crazy and I wanted not to be disrupted. Your stress reaction might be different.
A stress reaction shows we’re overloaded and probably denying our troubled emotions.
To calm down our stress reactions we need empathy for our underlying emotions. We need the emotional hug, validation, and courage that comes from being listened to by a friend, or by journaling
How are you feeling in this Coronavirus pandemic?
- Discombobulated by the news, cancelled events, and being hunkered down in the house.
- Afraid for loved ones who are vulnerable to get sick with COVID-19 virus.
- Frustrated with sick people who don’t stay home and expose you or your loved ones.
- Worried about financial losses.
- Tired and flat, even after a full night’s sleep.
- Sad over lost opportunities.
Some people think it’s “a downer” to verbalize emotional distress and ask for empathy. Or they judge it as weak, complaining, or selfish. If you take responsibility for your emotions and appreciate the person who listens, then it’s an expression of authenticity.
Together we can grow in emotionally honesty, faith and courage. We can draw close to one another and be compassionate to people around us.
I wish I could wave a magic wand and cure this situation. The real question is what can we do?
We can encourage people over the phone. We can listen to uplifting music. We can take groceries to elderly or children who are missing their school meals. If you need someone to talk to or pray with you, please know that I am only a phone call away. Please don't hesitate to reach out.
Executive Director, Pure Initiative
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