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Accepting our new normal - one year into the COVID-19 pandemic

In March of 2020 it was televised. We all started to panic. Anxiety skyrocketed due to news of coronavirus. People started hoarding necessities such as toilet paper, hand sanitizer and paper towels. No one knew exactly what we were getting ourselves into, but we all wanted to prepare for the unknown nonetheless. Under faulty leadership, we haven't progressed in our knowledge of what has actually happened and what has yet to occur. We could only learn from experience. One year later, March 2021, we continue to wear masks, social distance, over use hand sanitizer and quarantine from the ones we love. It's been hard, especially during the winter months, to stay inside cooped up from the world and what we knew. We have learned to adapt by working from home, virtual learning, video calls with loved ones, incorporating indoor exercising, etc. All the feelings you have of anxiety, depression and sadness along with feelings of being grateful, happy and content are all normal. These continuous moments of uncertainty can be met with whatever you give it. Just try your best every single day, whatever that looks like it's up to you. Just remember to check in with yourself. Try not to avoid how you actually feel. If you feel like your negative feelings are becoming too overwhelming, go for a therapeutic walk, listen to music, talk to a friend or family member or book a therapy session with us.

Grounding is a technique that you can use to pull away from negative feelings or challenging emotions. They help distract you from what you're currently experiencing and refocus on what you're doing in the current moment. Below are some grounding techniques you can utilize:

-- Be creative. Try cooking/baking a new recipe. Choreograph a dance to your favorite song.

-- Do something you love. Listen to your favorite musical playlist, audiobook or podcast.

-- Move your body by exercising. Pay attention to how your body feels while working out.

-- Play a game that is mentally challenging like Monopoly, Tetris or Word Searches.

-- Write down and list 5 positive things about yourself and/or practice positive self-affirmations in the mirror for 2 - 5 minutes.

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