Your Survival Guide
How to survive extraordinary times, one day at a time.
Six months into it and I've taken a few steps moving forward. But then there are the steps backward. Maybe that's why it feels like I'm standing still.
For me, the worst thing about Pandemic Fatigue is feeling guilty about it. I have been inconvenienced by the shutdown - my business has suffered, my vacation plans were canceled and my son can't visit from Colorado yet. On the other hand, I'm still able to put food on the table and Mason and I and the rest of our family are healthy. I'm not comfortable going back to the gym or indoor dining. But I am walking and doing yoga at home and I will eat on a restaurant patio. A little inconvenience yes, but why am I so exhausted by it? I feel guilty even admitting I have Pandemic Fatigue.
I believe the mental and emotional toll of having my life in upheaval is the main culprit. I'm ready to hug people again. Go back to the gym and indoor dining. Embrace the casual routine of my life - which I took for granted. And when my biggest annoyances last September was the pumpkin spice phenomena. Now I worry about people not fully wearing their masks and standing too close to me in the grocery store.
When you compare your suffering to someone else's, it's what's known as Comparative Suffering - It is never helpful and can actually be harmful. Brene Brown talks about it on her podcast and it gave me an "aha moment." Listen here for the full scoop.
Comparative suffering doesn't make our load or our neighbor's (who may or may not have a more dire situation) any easier. Instead it makes our load heavier to carry. We are on the hamster wheel of guilt and the load of stress and anxiety can be overwhelming as we thing "I shouldn't feel bad about my situation because I don't have it as bad as someone else."
When we allow ourselves to fully acknowledge and grieve, we are able to find peace and joy in the big and small moments - without guilt.
Whatever you're going through, remember you're not alone. We are in this together, but we don't have to suffer. We can just keep putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward until we emerge on the other side of the tunnel.