Coping with COVID-19 in 2022


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 11/01/2022 (504 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

At the end of each year there’s definitely value in taking some time to reflect on the year that has passed and to plan for the upcoming 12 months; however, over the past two years COVID-19 has greatly affected this process.

It’s hard not to dwell on all the things we weren’t able to do last year, and likely won’t be able to do for much of the upcoming year. I don’t know about you but I find that many discussions focus on what we used to do, and what we hope to do once we can travel without restrictions. While I’m sure we’ll eventually get through this, it can be frustrating and mentally draining.

I recalled taking a course on “mindfulness” a few years ago, and wondered if there was anything that could be applied to our current situation. I took the course to help with the stresses of managing complex projects with big budgets and tight schedules. I was working long hours and not really thinking of anything outside of work.

Being mindful and focusing on the here and now will help keep you from falling into a pit of worry over COVID-19 and the future.

While the course involved meditation and perspectives from people such as Eckhart Tolle and Deepak Chopra, one of the real benefits was developing a sense of mindfulness — focusing on experiencing and enjoying what’s in front of you, rather than worrying about the past or future. My course homework was to keep a daily journal, recording all of the positive and interesting things that happened to me each day.

In doing some checking recently, I found that there has been some research in medical/psychological academia that applies this thinking to the COVID-19 situation.

Mindfulness is presented as a method of coping with the uncertainties of COVID-19. It is easy to become very worried about what the future may hold, and our lack of control over many of the physical, financial, social and emotional aspects of our lives — such as governments not doing as much as we would like, or not acting fast enough, or people not being as careful as we’d like.

Mindfulness certainly won’t solve these problems, but it’s a way of acknowledging them without helplessly ranting about them — to bring us back to the present and things we do have influence over, including how we interact with one another.

My challenge for 2022 is to try not to keep focusing on how things will be better in the future, but to try to get more out of each day.

In his book The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle says “it is not uncommon for people to spend their whole life waiting to start living” and “acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”

Nick Barnes is a community correspondent for Whyte Ridge.

Nick Barnes

Nick Barnes
Whyte Ridge community correspondent

Nick Barnes is a community correspondent for Whyte Ridge.

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