Challenges are nothing new to those of us living with chronic pain.
But things are harder now.
It is more difficult to carry out the daily activities of life, both emotionally and physically.
I’m personally having a harder time dealing with depression and anxiety. My pain levels are up as well.
I imagine that is true for many of you, too.
So, what can we do to make things better during these trying times?
Limit the amount of time you spend watching/reading the news
Staying informed is important, but I know how easy it is to overdo it.
On the days that I spend too much time glued to the TV, I wind up more stressed and depressed, which makes it next to impossible for me to get much of anything else done.
So, I’m trying to stick with one newscast a day. Nothing more.
It’s enough to keep me informed without completely overwhelming me.
I suggest you do the same.
Seek out the good
This is another thing I’ve been doing, because God knows, I need to balance out all the horrible stuff I’m hearing with news that makes me feel better.
And the stories are out there. Of people stepping up and taking care of one another.
Even though these aren’t the stories that are likely to make the mainstream news, they can do wonders in terms of making us feel like there is still good in the world right now.
Here are a few sites that have been helping me:
Let go of guilt
Maybe you can’t do as much as you’d like right now, either for yourself or others.
And while it would be great if we could all take care of one another right now, not all of us have the bandwidth for that.
Just take care of yourself the best you can.
If that means that meals need to be simpler, go for it. If it means that the house is messier than normal, that’s ok too.
Whatever you are capable of doing right now is enough.
But for those of us who do have the energy and resources, here are some ways to help others:
Donate to causes you believe in
Check in with neighbors, family, and friends
Write or call your congressman
Honestly, we should probably be doing this even when things aren’t insane. Here are a few ideas to get you started, but feel free to share any and all concerns you may have with your elected officials.
- Healthcare for all
- Student loan forgiveness
- Strengthen the safety nets
- Expand unemployment benefits
- Suspend rental fees/ mortgage payments/ utility fees
- Demand that the government put the needs of people over corporate profits
Whether you can help others or not, know that this is hard for all of us, in one way or another. Be kind.
Do the best you can and take care,