Dealing with Anxiety and Depression during COVID

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My 94 year old dad called me and was worried that he had gotten COVID. He has been socially isolated since March so the chances of him contracting the virus is slim to none. It’s already hard for the elderly. My dad has lost many of his friends the last 20 years of his life. He is one of the few remaining. It’s a lonely road for him, full of anxiety and depression like for many others. I am sure he didn’t think this was how he was going to spend his last years on this planet.

But this is the reality that we are all facing.. The new reality of life with social distancing. Yes, soon we will emerge from the cocoon of our houses but will we emerge stronger, better, more content, more loving and more peaceful? I struggle with coming to terms with a new reality and let’s face it.. Loneliness. Yes, I have been zooming friends, talking on the phone but nothing is replacing human contact. Yesterday, I went on my evening walk and saw 2 families having dinner in their front yard with two long tables 6 feet apart. I applauded their ability to keep social distancing and hang out with friends and family. I haven’t been that creative
but the time is NOW. I can’t live in fear of the virus “getting me” anymore. I must live even if this means with a mask.

We are all called upon to up our game. The hamster wheel of frenetic work has stopped for some and for our health care workers has become a marathon. I ask myself, how do I want to live? And the answer is: from a place of love. And in order to get there, I need to calm myself down like so many have to. Here are the tips I have to deal with anxiety and depression so we can emerge with more love.

  1. Listen to uplifting messages: which means that I tune in to podcasts that talk about how to make the planet better, how to personally deal with difficulty, and how to rise up and help people. I try to limit the amount of time I am watching how many deaths are occuring. I am informed but the TV isn’t going on all day with the news.
  2. Begin a meditation practice: this doesn’t have to look like 1 hour perched on a mat, but can be a 10 minute practice with an application like insight timer or headspace.
  3. Remember your adaptability: to do this, think about your ancestors and all they went through for you to be able to be here. For thousands of years there have been plagues, difficult travel, trauma’s, losses, war and yet…here you are. We are meant to survive and thrive.
  4. Ask for support: this is the time to ask for what you need. Call friends, loved ones, counselors, spiritual practitioners. You don’t have to go at it alone.
  5. Take care of your health: – We have all been reminded that health is precious and without it we have nothing. What are you doing to be well? Prevention is so important. Herbs, acupuncture, massage, exercise, meditation, good nutrition, extra supplements, yoga, qi gong, getting out in nature, smiling, laughing, exploring creativity, and most important LOVING.
  6. Connect: animals, humans and all beings have life force that we can connect with. Sometimes even having eye contact on a video chat will inspire us.

My kundalini teacher tells us to bring in the mantra , Ahem prem – I am love. It’s important not to forget.

Love and Blessings,