• Susan L.

Look on the bright side

As of late, staying positive has become more of a challenge now than ever. Since the arrival of this horrible pandemic, life as we know it has suddenly changed. From the moment we start our day, we are faced with a tsunami of information that determines our fates, actions, and yes, even our moods.

There are endless headlines that encourage us to stay home, use social distancing, home school the kids, and start a new exercise routine in the living room. We have even taken our cleaning routines to a whole other level. And all the while, we are told to remain calm and optimistic.

I have to admit; I never believed something like this could ever happen in my lifetime. I doubt many people did. All of a sudden, there is a new set of rules and expectations that has my head spinning.

As a mother, grandmother, wife, and caregiver of an elderly loved one, my list of concerns is continuing to grow with each new statistic. These are uncertain times. But one thing is certain; staying positive is more important now than ever! According to science, positive thinking is not only good for our brains; it is crucial for good health and can improve our immune system.

Here are some suggestions to help you cope:

· Be gentle and patient with yourself, especially when you are having a bad day.

· Establish a new routine, and try to stick with it as much as possible.

· Acknowledge that much of this situation is out of your control, and worrying about it won’t change the outcome.

· Have faith, whatever that means for you.

· Practice gratitude and count your blessings.

· Find the humor in things. Sometimes laughter is the best medicine.

· Start a new hobby or read a good book. Keep your mind occupied.

· Look on the bright side of things. There is always a silver lining.

· Stay in touch with family and friends. Take advantage of all the ways technology helps us communicate.

· Practice self-care. Eat well, exercise, and get enough rest.

Being positive and maintaining a good attitude can change things dramatically. But there is a flip-side to this. Pretending everything is great when life obviously is not great, can be exhausting and adds a lot of pressure. Sometimes it’s okay to feel sad or angry, and It’s important always to acknowledge your feelings. The goal is to live a generally positive life, avoid dwelling on specific emotions, and keep things in perspective.

Wishing you good health, happiness, and peace!