Resilience Helps Minimize the Challenges of COVID-19 Pandemic
A recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll found that 45% of the American public said their mental health is suffering as a result of the current pandemic.
The current COVID-19 crisis and its resulting traumatic effects, deaths, job and economic losses, social distancing isolation and uncertainty about the future will only increase the number of families and individuals negatively impacted as time goes on.
Did you know that women are more likely than men to report an impact on their mental health?
Lots of people report being exhausted by 5:00 pm – much earlier than usual. Why is that? The stress and underlying strain that are a continuous part of our current lives is harming our mental health. Children are not immune to what is happening, even if they don’t fully understand it. They witness our strain, bad moods, irritability, and uncertainty.
In times such as these, moments of happiness are a gift. Are you able to find even passing feelings of joy? There’s nothing wrong with feeling happiness even during the darkest times. It’s how we remind ourselves that life is good and definitely worth living. It’s how we get through another challenging day.
Can you complete this sentence? “If it weren’t for the pandemic, I would not be able to _______?”
Many people are finding solace in unexpected ways as our lives are turned upside down.
We should notice every bit of goodness each day has to offer and feel grateful for the experience. Noticing the lightness that we can sometimes feel is a reminder of life in better days.
These moments help build resilience as we all struggle with loneliness, isolation, and a very different life than we had planned. This will set a model for your children as they witness your spirit. Formal lessons are important for math and English, but life lessons are best taught by example.
Take some time to think or write about the joyful surprises you find during these trying times. Discuss it with your friends, family, or spouse. Others will benefit from your ability to separate the good from the bad and to hold both as real at the same time. This is the foundation of resilience.
Resilience is the ability to cope in spite of setbacks. It’s the ability to move forward in the face of challenges and to return quickly to pre-stressed levels once the negative event has ended. Resilient people remember who they are and what they value no matter what happens.
A funny thing about being resilient is that it’s not that useful during times when everything is good. But, it can make a world of difference when life is hard.
Although children have the ability to find the good in the midst of the bad, they become afraid when the trusted adults in their lives can’t do so. They will benefit from adults who teach them to notice the lightness and beauty in their days, despite the challenges of stay-at-home orders.