It's been an entire year since we have been in this pandemic. The key phrase I've been hearing from everyone: This has been the slowest fastest year ever. And it's so true! The stress goes up for everyone when the world is in a state of disaster. After a while of being "stuck in it", it's common to feel overwhelmed and ready to go back to "normal".
This is the new normal, but it still doesn't feel normal. And yet - the old normal doesn't feel normal anymore either. With that being said, many of us are trying to find normal, or remember what normal means to us again. While we still have a difficult journey ahead of us, things will start to trickle back to pre-COVID with modifications.
But right now we are still here, and many people are struggling with motivation, feeling stuck, lonely, drained, exhausted and overwhelmed. I've been calling this "COVID fatigue". It's basically burn out. We're over it. There are perks to being at home, but we were never meant to be in isolation or in a constant state of stress. So of course we are all getting antsy to return to the things in life that we miss doing and haven't been able to do. Give yourself a break. You've been doing this for an entire year - it's okay to be over it. It's okay to feel stuck.
These are just a few of the things that many of you have been stuck with:
Those dishes haven't been done?
You've been wearing the same thing all week?
You've been sleeping in and rolling out of bed a minute before work/school starts?
Your dogs/cats have been interrupting your zoom calls?
You haven't gotten your hair cut in over a year? Or maybe you've cut it yourself!
You haven't seen your friends in several months?
Your virtual workout class has horrible bandwidth and keeps pausing?
You forgot to mute yourself when asking someone else a question that has nothing to do with the call you are in?
Your entire world was turned up-side-down. With vaccines rolling out, and businesses slowly going back to in person services, the light is at the end of the tunnel. However it's okay to feel uncertain; last year we weren't sure how long it would take and when things got better they got worse again. It makes sense that you would feel this is never ending and there is no hope in sight. But please remember two things:
we are in this together (like literally - everyone is struggling to some degree)
there are very few things in life that are permanent
While some of the effects that COVID has had on us are permanent, like the loss of a loved one, being stuck in your house and limited in life activities and interactions with others isn't one of them.
It's normal to feel down and drained. Although if you are starting to feel so down that you can't get out of bed, you don't see the point in things, your motivation has disappeared, and you have been thinking of ending your life. Please reach out for help. You might feel alone, but there is help out there.
Crisis Text Line: Text HOME to 741741 for free, 24/7 crisis counseling.