“Having a plan can help calm my angst and bring a sense of control even if the future is completely uncertain.” ~Janine Rudder
As the country loosens quarantine restrictions I’m becoming increasingly uneasy. It’s too soon and I’m afraid. I feel like people are uninformed and impatient. And that’s fine if their actions only impacted themselves, but we know that we are totally interdependent right now. My neighbor’s actions impact me. My behavior could affect you even if you’re in another city, and most terrifying of all is the decision-making power of politicians and the motivations behind them.
The bottom line is I’ve been feeling overwhelmed. My mind has been in a constant loop of nightmare future scenarios. I’m deeply concerned that this nagging worry will become our new normal.
Although I’ve at times allowed myself to be carried away with the hysteria of the outside world, I know that this is not how I want to feel each day. I also know that I can choose and act on my decision to feel differently. I’ve begun exploring how to shift my emotional state from passive and helpless to composed and hopeful and discovered that having a plan can help calm my angst and bring a sense of control even if the future is completely uncertain.
Here’s how I plan to approach life, and keep peace of mind, as the country takes steps to return to pre-covid life.
Health: I have to leave the house sometimes, that’s just a fact, so I can’t completely control my external environment. Of course I’m wearing a face covering and keeping a safe social distance, but sometimes things happen that are outside of my control. I’ve decided to lean into a focus on my internal health, which I have a bit more ability to regulate.
Finances: The economic impact of Covid has devastated people’s lives all around the world. Reading about how various countries are supporting the people suffering most is both heartening and infuriating. Even though I’m incredibly grateful to be able to work from home and my finances have not changed drastically in the past few months, I’m exasperated at how this country is navigating this economic disaster and it can be a source of stress. To alleviate that, I’ve been leaning into what I can do to feel more secure and in control of my finances.
Joy: Prioritizing fun and gratification is always top of mind for me, but now that we are all going through an existential crisis, it feels more important.
Janine Rudder is a coach and co-owner at Manifestara: www.manifestara.com