Tis the Season to Be

Tis the Season to Be……
Anxious, Overwhelmed, Uncertain, Frenetic, and YES, Merry

“Uncertainty is the only certainty there is. Knowing how to live with insecurity is the only security.” (John Allen Paulos, Mathematics Professor, Temple University)

With the uncertain timing of receiving the Covid-19 vaccine and financial and emotional stressors, the winter holidays come readily packaged for a Pandora’s Box of anxiety.

Now that school is out for winter recess, togetherness (and lack thereof) is thrown into high relief. You question the quality of your parenting time. You want this time of year to have some meaning, but you’re preoccupied and overwhelmed with the burdens of simultaneous work, childcare and holiday preparations. Perhaps you’re over spending, perhaps you’re neglectful of others and feel guilty, perhaps you’re irritable and just need some time alone. Large family gatherings compromise safety but how can we celebrate without our family or friends? Additionally, which family members are “safe” to be with and from whom do you need to isolate? Tough and potentially lonely questions, but ones that need to be asked.

Here are 5 strategies to help deal with our insecurities and uncertainties:

1. Focus on the present moment.
One of meditation and yoga’s central tenets is the ability to stay fully present and to accept the reality in which you’re living. Accept that the next number of months will continue to be challenging but the end is in sight! You’ve made it this far and you’re too close to the end to remain in a state of despair.

2. Take control.
Interpret your anxiety as a challenge. It’s an opportunity to practice resilience and strengthen your ability to be flexible. Resilience is an essential ingredient in managing anxiety and flexibility is key!

3. Write it down.
Take stock of your feelings instead of lashing out. Examine when you feel at your lowest? At your best? What are you grateful for?

4. Don’t forget self-care.
These are the magic words of 2020 Covid-19 that we’ve heard and read about, but they’re so important now:
Rest, healthy eating, regular exercise, learning a new skill and quality time spent with family and friends, whether in person or via Zoom, are essential ingredients you need to take care of yourself.

5. Take action when you see a need.
Volunteer remotely. Lend a supportive ear. Help your neighbors who are elderly or without family. Focus on satisfaction.

You feel better about yourself when you connect with people in your world.
This then leads straight to a sense of purpose in your life.
And that sensibility is what is ultimately healing.