Do you catch yourself saying, “remember when we used to do this?” or “things are so different now?” Frankly, it’s hard not to consistently think about the days when we could leave the house without a mask on or go into a crowded restaurant and not think anything of it.
And that’s okay.
It’s okay to remind yourself of how things were, like mourning over a loss. We need to take time to mourn and then most importantly, look forward.
Think of it this way: if you’re always craning your neck to see what’s behind you, you’re going to have a sore neck. The same goes for looking back emotionally, regardless of the memories happy or sad. If we are constantly looking behind us, when are we paying attention to what’s in front of us?
Staying in the past is comfortable. We all know what’s going to happen, and there is no uncertainty. It’s like re-watching your favorite movie over and over.
The phrase “new normal” has quickly become commonplace in our conversations. While it may be true that things will be different from now on, there is still one thing we can take from quarantine into our “new normal.”
Millions of people have been greatly affected by COVID-19, and taking a moment during the day to practice gratitude is important. It’s like taking a breath of fresh air. Simply writing a shortlist of things that make you smile or people you’re thankful for can help flip a negative mindset like a lightswitch. In doing so, remember that it’s okay to feel many different emotions. Emotions make us human.
Even having gratitude for our emotions is a good thing. It may sound silly, but emotions help us learn to be empathetic and care for one another.
When we find ourselves feeling discouraged from daily news, it’s important to remember the positives in our own lives. Regardless of their size, even if it’s just gratitude for a good night’s sleep or blue skies.
It’s the little things.
Looking forward, we’re going to have a deeper appreciation for our relationships with family and friends. A deeper appreciation for store clerks, health care workers, delivery drivers..the list could go on forever.
While it might be easy to stay in the past, looking forward and keeping a grateful mindset might just be the key to coming out of this pandemic clear-headed.