In the past few months, many of us have been forced to really slow down. Whether we’ve lost our jobs, had them suspended, were told to work from home, or simply had no choice but to quarantine due to health problems and law, we’ve all experienced a period of great pause that made it possible to reflect, reassess and, hopefully, re-experience the world in a new way.

If you’re one of those people for whom the pandemic meant additional hardship and challenge, those negative situations, too, have changed you, and now is the good time to figure out where to go from here. Might you allow your circumstances to continue to take control over your life? Or will you try to think of a life that’s better and more meaningful where hardship is still a part of it, but is no longer something that has to overwhelm you?

The key to making changes in our new post-lockdown reality is to be able to connect to others. Some of us are now allowed to cautiously expand our “bubbles” to more people, places of business are opening up, as are parks and beaches. In other words, things look like they’re going back to semi-normal (for now, nothing will be like it used to be – who knows, maybe it’ll never be like it used to be). For those reasons, we no longer have excuses to self-isolate and avoid human contact – even from a distance or virtually. I’ve seen people going for walks with masks, keeping their 6-ft distance, friends chatting on benches while sitting on the opposite ends. I was at a coed baby shower the other day that happened outside in the snow centered around a roaring camp fire. If you’re comfortable doing these things (and don’t have the symptoms, etc.), try it. If it’s too much, set up some FaceTime or Zoom and do it this way. This is the time to reach out for help, especially if you’re struggling, to make plans with friends and loved ones the way we used to… but different. I know that people set up Christmas and New Years gatherings via zoom, that they’ve watched the playoffs, celebrated birthdays. We don’t need to stop doing all these things just because the world is trying to stop us. We can adapt. And accept.

For me, it’s winter season, so I I’m inside a lot more than I like. Some plans haven’t worked out (like having friends visit – though my wife and I just had a short visit with some dear friends outside on our back porch), but there were many moments where I’ve found my bonds deepening and becoming stronger because of what’s going on. As we all do, I think about myself a lot, and I tend to sit in my head quite often, but now more than ever, I’m aware of people – strangers and family alike – and the care that we need to show one another. I think it’s remarkable how we now have to literally think of others all the time before we even leave the house. Wearing a mask means you care; observing distancing rules means that you care as well.


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#newreality #mentalhealth #sober #soberlife #sobriety #health #addictionrecovery #addiction #alcoholism #substanceusedisorders #recovery #adoptee #adoption #trauma #traumainformed #bluemind

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