Return to Normal?
As restrictions and lockdowns begin to ease – again! – some will be looking forward with excitement to the opportunities to see friends and families, heading to the gym, travelling and even returning to the office!
There will be others who will have taken time to adjust to the situation of being in lockdown who now need to consider what coming out of these restrictions means to them. Consider those who were shielding for the best part of a year, others who have struggled with their physical or mental health or losing loved ones during this time.
We may look at how others are behaving and believe we should be celebrating and joyful. Try not to compare yourself with others – navigating your way through this journey is unlike anything most of us will have been through! We can’t really know how people truly are feeling unless they are comfortable sharing that with us. Every situation is different, uncertainty and stressors are high; we are all doing the best we can.
Connecting with others was perhaps the biggest change we encountered as we moved from the odd text message or phone call to arrange visits and social events, to fully online with Zoom and Skype meetings filling our diaries. We may have loved or loathed this way of communicating with our friends, families and colleagues; who knew it would become standard practice for over a year. Now we are looking to return to in-person meet ups and while we have been waiting, patiently or not, for this, it could bring anxious feelings to the surface.
Just as we start to get accustomed to the normality of distance, here we face another change. For some it will be a ‘walk in the park’ but what about those who will find this change hard to deal with? We may be assuming that lockdown lifting is going to be easy for everyone. It is unlikely that will be true for all. It is as reasonable to feel anxious as it is joy. We may have just settled into this new space and here we are about to change it all again.
5 Ways to Wellbeing plays a big part in our life for mental wellbeing, alongside other tips for good health e.g. eating and sleeping well, maintaining some kind of routine or structure to the day. We were encouraged to look for ways this could continue even with restrictions in force. These continue to be important as we make way for more changes into whatever comes next for us. What can you do to help yourself, is there anything you can do to help others? What small steps are you prepared to make towards improved wellbeing?
Acknowledge that we are all different beings with our own perspective on the last year. Support each other; try not to assume everyone feels the same way or judge those who are finding change difficult.
Being kind to ourselves and those around us is more important than ever. And best of all – it costs nothing!