Nope Rhymes with Cope.

My friend recently posted on her Facebook feed how she is starting to hit the wall with this whole pandemic thing. I know for a fact that she is not alone as the vaccines are taking longer to roll out, and therefore the predictions of when we can get back to what is anything close to normal are becoming panic-inducing–that timeframe seems to be much farther off that we originally were thinking and hoping for.

Ok, now, BREATHE.

That’s the bad news, and it’s a reality. There is no sugar-coating it, because we do need to face it. But how? How do we cope? Along with being gentle on yourself and giving yourself a whole shitload of self-care, here’s my two cents, for what it’s worth:

Accept it.

Things will never get back to ‘normal’. If 2020 has taught us anything, its lesson is that there IS no normal. Life is unpredictable, and it always has been! The sooner you can accept that fact, the easier it will be on you. The closest we can get is to realize that, when things start to ease up, we will be in a NEW NORMAL. And then that will change as well. Once you can come to terms with the inevitable cycle of our lives and times, you can start to move with it instead of against it.

Get Busy.

Not long after the shit hit the fan, I did something that was stupid and impractical; as we all worried about the state of our finances, I spent big money on a course. And it was the smartest thing I could have done.

I decided that I was going to get down and dirty with my business and give it the attention it needed and deserved. As I learned more, I did more, and to this day I am extremely busy from sun up to sun down. I don’t have a lot of time to get depressed.

You may not have your own business you are trying to start or grow, but what else have you been wanting to try, or learn about? More than ever, there are so many resources out there! Many that are free, so you don’t have to spend a dime. Take courses, attend webinars, watch TED Talks and get inspired. Watch YouTube videos about how to bead necklaces, paint with acrylics, grow a Chia Pet. For work or play, this is a great time to hunker down and grow your interests and talents.

Keep Connecting.

As I’m sure most of you will agree, not being able to hug our friends and distant loved ones is probably one of the worst parts of this whole damn thing. Zoom will never take the place of that physical touch, but Zoom we must. Make it a priority to meet up with people in this way–even setting up weekly or monthly dates that are always there.

And then go outside your normal circle. During this COVID time, I’ve been much more involved with making new online friends and joining various groups. Once again, find something you’re interested in–there’s a group for that. Put yourself out there by commenting and supporting others when you like what they are saying or doing, and before you know it, you’ll have some new friends.

I’ve met so many new chums during this time without ever seeing their damn faces! Those who are local better get ready to get awkward, because when this fog is lifted I’ll be making a bee-line their way and coming in for the biggest damn bear hug they’ve ever had.

But Also Disconnect.

I’m the first to admit that I don’t meditate enough (or how I prefer to say, give myself a Mind Chill), but I definitely feel better when I do. Quieting your mind when it’s racing is really difficult, but all the more reason to try to do it. Your poor mind, heart, and soul needs a break.

Visualize yourself standing in the midst of chaos with your arms outstretched, your eyes closed, and surrounded by a warm swirling light that takes all of that stuff and spins it off into the ether, leaving only you. You and a calm, serene feeling that all is well, you are fine, you’ve got this. That swirling dervish of toxic dung can’t touch you. Breathe and stay there as long as you can. Ahhh.

Try not to get caught up in the media quagmire. Turn off the TV, don’t check the news sites, avoid falling down an icky rabbit hole of disrespectful Facebook comments that leave you with that angry, churning feeling. Who wants to feel that all day long?? Fill your days instead with productive work time, happy friend time, outside time, escape into a book or Netflix binge time.

And most of all, be kind to yourself and understand that you are not alone in feeling the way that you do. People that seem to have their shit together on social media have their moments, too.

And for the ones out there that try to make you feel like you are over-thinking, that all of this is no big deal, that there is nothing to worry about–those in ‘Plandemic’ fantasy? Just feel sad for them and move on, happy to realize who you really want to spend your time and thoughts with as you move forward into this ‘New Normal’.

Do you have any more coins to add to the coping thought jar? Things that have worked well in helping you get through this mess? I’d love to hear and share your thoughts!

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