Reentering the Void: The Emotional COVID Coaster of Lockdowns and Reopens
The world seems to be oscillating between “bouncing back” and locking down. This back and forth can cause exacerbated stress, anxiety, and depression for introverts and extroverts alike. If you enjoy your space and silence, you may feel a little nervous about heading out to dinner with friends after spending the last 18 months tucked away in your apartment or home. Recharging that social battery can be distressing and can take some time.
Inversely, maybe you’re a social butterfly, and you’re ready to see your friends and loved ones again. However, you’re weighing the desire to experience the world again against concerns about potential variants and enclosed spaces. No matter your personality type, the pandemic roller coaster has been daunting and stressful for everyone.
Uncertainty, Anxiety, and Guilt
If you’re concerned about going back into the world, you aren’t alone. A study conducted by the American Psychiatric Association showed that nearly half of Americans surveyed felt anxious about returning to “normal life.”
If you find yourself excited about heading out but are cautious about potentially harmful variants or feel you are a little rusty with the small talk, you are one among many. After binge-watching your favorite shows for a year and tossing together late-night recipes you found on Google, the idea of dinner with friends may seem like a Herculean task.
However, humans thrive on social connections. When you pin that biological need against the possibility of getting yourself or others sick, the anxiety and uncertainty compound.
It can also be easy to feel guilty for deciding to go out. Even though the world seems to be reopening in parts of the country, there are many factors you might be mulling over as you try to unwind with friends or family. All of this can exacerbate issues you may be struggling with, but it is essential to remember that you are not alone in feeling this way.
Safely Recharging Your Social Batteries
Getting an invite from a friend may have filled you with excitement and happiness at one point, but after spending copious amounts of time distanced from others, you may feel as though you don’t have much to say. That’s perfectly natural. Your concerns are not irrational nor illogical; however, it is safe to say that many people feel the same way.
Going out with friends safely may feel challenging at first, but it is essential to your mental and emotional health to spend time with others. Many people are reentering the void with shaky legs, so it’s okay if the topic of conversation sits on how many times you rewatched The Office.
Keeping Tabs On Your Triggers
You may have found yourself struggling mentally and emotionally during the pandemic, and you aren’t alone. Reentering social settings may be difficult at first, but it’s essential to remember that many people are out and about on wobbly legs. If you suddenly feel anxious or nervous upon entering a social setting, that’s completely normal.
Being mindful of the things that cause you to worry or become upset is one of the many things you can do to keep yourself calm when reentering social settings. Your mental health is important. If you’re one of the many Americans living with a mental health or substance abuse issue, the concept of reopens and especially potential lockdowns can exacerbate these issues. However, keeping tabs on your triggers can help you ease back into “normal” life.
Lockdowns, Reopens, and Sobriety
The pandemic has hit everyone hard in various ways, including those in recovery and struggling with substance use disorder. Several studies over the past 18 months have shown that binge drinking and recreational use of prescription drugs increased. Prolonged bouts of isolation and boredom can be potentially disastrous for sobriety efforts.
The thought of the world reopening may also weigh on your mind if you are in recovery. Many people are flocking to bars and restaurants after long periods indoors. Being mindful of your triggers can help you deal with the potential of being out and around others while they are partaking in alcohol use and the possibility of future lockdowns.
Staying Mentally Healthy in the Midst of Uncertainty
No matter your personality type or personal struggle, it’s imperative to your overall well-being to try and stay mentally healthy. It doesn’t help when people drone on about staying “positive.” However, we can do our best to be mindful of how we react to both good and bad news and how watching world events unfold 24/7 can impact our minds. We can do our best to compartmentalize what we can control and what we cannot control.
Lockdowns and reopens have been stressful for everyone. Loss, grief, and loneliness can be particularly stressful for you if you already struggle with your mental health. It doesn’t matter if you’re an extrovert excited to be back out with friends and family or an introvert concerned about recharging your social batteries; the pandemic affects everyone differently. You are not alone. If you find that the world’s constant changes are causing you mental and emotional distress, reach out to Achieve Concierge today. Our team of professionals and experts is trained to help you build and maintain healthy habits during stressful times. We are committed to providing the highest level of mental wellness care with personalized service that is second to none. If you feel as though you need to speak with a caring professional, we offer Telemedicine services and same-day services. Achieve Concierge is here to help. Call us today at (858) 221-0344.
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