Things have changed in the last month with the spread of Covid-19 meaning that we are now living in 'bubbles' with physically distancing enforced by our government.
This means that for a lot of us our days look very different to how they did only a few weeks ago. For some they are now busier than ever, either working in essential services, supporting essential services or trying to prepare for once the current restrictions are removed. The other side of the coin is that with many businesses forced to close their doors for the time being many people are spending a lot of time at home, with family or on their own.
There is a level of uncertainty around jobs, as many businesses are already having to undertake large redundancies, with some industries, such as travel and tourism, turned upside down. Add to this all of the news stories, social media posts, discussions and other information we absorb, often without even realising it, and you can see why levels of stress and anxiety have increased for some.
Whenever I go on Social Media or flick on the news, (which I never usually watch, read or engage with) I am hearing a lot about how people will be struggling with their mental health during this time, and while I don't dispute there will be people struggling, I feel like we are almost setting that as the expectation because of assumptions being made that people will be struggling in this 'new normal'.
This is a bit of a conundrum for me, as I completely agree that it is important to acknowledge that it's ok to not be ok and to provide the means for people to look after and prioritise their overall wellbeing, but I also feel like it's a fine line between creating space for those in distress, and creating distress because of an expectation people will be feeling distress. I'm a huge believer that mindset is extremely powerful, so if we are freaking out about freaking out, well we are going to freak out.
This is something I've been playing with in my thoughts since we were first made aware of the possibility of going into 'lockdown'. As someone who has experienced mental health distress, and continues to take medication for this, I have been wondering if I will have any mental health distress during this time. I think that subconsciously, through having this tiny seed in the back of my mind, it has played a part in my holding back from sharing just how great I am actually doing. I didn't want to set myself up for a fall I guess. However after a catch up with a friend yesterday I've realised it's ok that I'm ok, and that there's a reason I'm ok, and that just because I've had falls in the past, it doesn't mean I will experience them again.
I have spent a lot, and I mean a lot, of time with myself over the last 10-15 years. I have gone inward, sat with myself and anything good or bad that has come up, I've shed tears of loneliness, fear, anger, hurt, rejection, frustration, craving and disappointment. I've felt those feelings with no where to escape to, been extremely uncomfortable with them, gone stir crazy and climbed the walls. I've also turned the corner where I've come to shed tears of relief, joy, contentment, self acceptance, surrender, happiness, self love and hope.
By being able to sit with myself, go inward and really connect I find that I feel a lot more comfortable, reassured and grounded. I am able to trust myself which means that I am far less affected by external things that would have made me lose my shit 10 years ago. I had no idea I was working my way to a better life when I was 'in' this. It just was what it was, it was my life, and it is only now that I see its meaning and beauty in letting me become the person I am able to be today.
I've also realised that I live instinctively, I think I always have. For me this looks like not overthinking things and going into 'analysis paralysis', but instead living in my 'be' mode where I just am, in the moment, doing what feels right and trusting in myself, those around me and my spiritual guardians. I believe that in living this way I am on the path that I should be on, and therefore there is nothing to worry about. This doesn't mean that life will be all roses and buttercups, as that isn't real life, but it means that the lessons I am given along the way have a purpose and allow me stay on the right path, as well as grow and become the best version of myself.
Some people are now being forced to spend time with themselves, be uncomfortable with the fear, loneliness, disappointment, hurt, anger and frustration. I want you to know that if you sit with it, feel it and let it go that you will be ok and come through this to thrive as well. You've got to feel whatever is inside you to heal it, because without feeling it those feelings will keep pestering you, rising up after you push them down until you be with them, acknowledge them, don't judge yourself for them and let them wash away.
I am here to hold the space for you, feel it and you will heal, I promise.