The outbreak of the coronavirus COVID-19 has impacted people in varying ways and has created an unprecedented situation around the world. It is understandable that during times like this, we all may be feeling afraid, worried, anxious and overwhelmed by the constantly changing alerts and media coverage regarding the spread of the virus. Businesses and schools have closed indefinitely, and hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs. As the economy continues to crash, everyday life feels more precarious than it ever has before. In addition, anxiety, and uncertainty about the future crowd our minds. I know how scared many of us are feeling, but I want to make one thing clear: we will weather this storm. Humankind is no stranger to calamitous outbreaks of diseases.
I am not underestimating the devastating effects of COVID-19. However, even though this is one of a kind viral outbreak of this nature and scale in our lifetime, taking care of ourselves, our friends and our families can help us cope with stress during these difficult times. Helping others cope with their stress can also make our communities stronger.
With everything that is going on in the world right now, know this: the storm WILL pass. And remember, you are not alone. We are more than anything we will ever face. We can handle whatever life brings us. We always have and we always will. This is the power of human race.
Any time you faced with a stressful situation, or something that has made you sick with worry, sit down and think about the last time you felt this way and how you survived! We tend to be quick to forget how great we are at overcoming difficulties in our lives. Sometimes you just reflecting on how far you have come and all that you have managed to deal with in your life can be the wake-up call you need to remind yourself that you are strong enough to cope and to kickstart those positive thoughts again. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it is about learning how to dance in the rain.
Here are a few recommendations and things you can do to cope with this situation; take a break; you don't have to watch, read or talk about COVID-19 all day. It’s important to stay informed but not consumed. Be mindful of sources of information and ensure you are accessing good quality and accurate information. Make time to unwind, pick up an old hobby. Start a new one. Just do something you enjoy. Take care of yourself, mind, body and soul. Do your best to remain calm and be mindful not to contribute to the widespread panic that can hinder efforts to positively manage the outbreak. More importantly ensure you are following directives issued by the government, medical advice for staying healthy, observe good hygiene habits, and avoiding infecting others.
Even though everyone is a potential victim, the good news is that everyone is a solution. In the past, people and communities have faced, and came through, many difficult situations because they’ve recognized their common humanity, stuck together and supported each other. Now is that time again.
Show compassion and kindness to one another. This isolation, self-imposed or medically mandated, can be an ideal opportunity to ponder on our journey so far and the future path. As we are passing through a tough phase, let’s turn this challenge into an opportunity and learn from it. For example, inter-dependency is something we tend to overlook in normal times. We must strengthen our sense of community by connecting with and supporting each other. We need to remind ourselves that we can manage this much better together in solidarity and that COVID-19 doesn’t discriminate – it can affect anyone regardless of age, gender, nationality, ethnicity, and social class. Each one of us is connected with everybody else. We must look to each other, to support and be kind to each other, to help us get through. Be compassionate to those in need.
Faced with an extraordinary crisis, most people tend to be selfish, but this is a crisis that teaches us to think equally of others. We are as safe as the care we take of others’ safety. We will prevail like that. This is reminding us to acknowledge, with humility, our absolute equality and interdependency. This is a lesson for all of us in building a better, common future. We must lay down our differences and thrive together as one.
Humanity is not about saving yourself from coronavirus or any other crisis, but rather helping each other persevere entirely.