Friends, I know this time seems unsettling and there is a lot of fear and anxiety going around. One thing I know for sure is that this pandemic has effected all of us, but not necessarily in the same way.
I’ve seen a lot of crazy hurtful deeds during this time, as well as some comic relief. I have also witnessed a lot of good and light during this dark time.
Much like yourself, I too have had waves of emotions and times where I felt helpless and depressed. Learning how to navigate “social distancing” and having a house full of the people I love ALL DAY long can have its toll. It’s tempting to go down the spiral of depression, anxiety, anger and confusion. I for one, noticed how gloomy and anxious I was becoming, and then trying to manage the people in my household who also were feeling overwhelmed with everything around them, was a lot to carry.
With all that said I discovered something that might help during this time. There has been a lot of good advice out there on how to cope and manage what we are all going through. Meditate, pick up a new hobby or delve yourself into the hobby you are already doing, virtual meetings with family and friends, clean the house (maybe), read, write, and one of the best are those virtual Happy Hours. There are messages about having grace with ourselves and fellow friends as we go through this unprecedented time.
I want to encourage you, especially if you are feeling pretty crummy, to consider helping someone else through this. I know we are “social distancing” but that doesn’t mean you can’t help. If there is one thing in my life that has really helped me and the wisdom that was given to me, is that when we start serving others we tend to feel good about that, and when we feel good about ourselves, we are less likely to feed the negativity that allows us to fall on ourselves with depression and anxiety.
When we start focusing on helping other people, we don’t have time to think about ourselves and our situation, therefore, we start spreading kindness, love, and gratitude.
Now you don’t have to do something grand and enormous. You don’t have to be rich or educated to help others. All it takes is a little time and a little effort along with some creativity and courage to do something for someone else.
Just a few weeks ago, when this all got started, a dear friend of mine left a card, a toilet paper roll, and a bag of chocolate chip cookies to bake on my front door. The cover on the card was beautifully painted and had the words, “Collect Memories, Not Stuff,” and on the inside she told me how much our friendship meant to her. Let me tell you, that brightened up my day and it felt good to know that other people care.
You see, it doesn’t take a whole lot to show someone you care, or to do something for someone else. I know you know people in your life who may need a little uplifting. Perhaps you know someone who needs a little more help, because as I mentioned earlier, this pandemic has hit us all in very different ways.
Here are a few ideas on what you can do to help someone else:
- 1. Start a Virtual Book Club/Happy Hour with friends.
- 2. Put together care packages with your friend’s favorite candy, food, books etc. and leave it at their door.
- 3. If you are blessed financially purchase a lap top for a student who does not have one.
- 4. Write thank you notes.
- 5. Write that letter.
- 6. Make masks and donate them.
- 7. Pull weeds for an elderly neighbor’s yard.
- 8. Order and pay for an elderly’s groceries.
- 9. Order take out for someone else.
You get the point. No matter how small, or how silly, do it. I promise you it will help diminish the depression and anxiety. If you really feel like doing something a little more, find a cause to support. Mentor or Tutor a young kid who needs support. Big Brothers Big Sisters is a wonderful organization that will give you a match, and I promise you that the Mentors get more out of it.
So stop posting political bullshit on your social media and start doing something for someone else. Your politics (and religion) mean nothing when you are not living it. No political post on my Facebook feed is going to change the world, but helping someone else, giving of our time, resources and creativity… will!
If you are so inclined, and you have other ideas to share about how to help or encourage others, please leave the ideas in the comments.