Thoughts on Staying Healthy During a Pandemic

No shortage of thoughts on Covid these days. All you have to do is google any professional acronym (i.e. APA, CDC, SHRM, EAPA, FEMA, etc.), and you will find some article or perspective. And here I am about to offer my perspectives. Now I’d like to think my thoughts are unique, but I know better, at best this is my take on all the other takes. Hopefully, you find them informative and worth your time to read.

The whole concept of social distancing is a misnomer. It’s physical distancing, plain and simple. Everyone needs social interaction, even the most introverted among us. Whether it’s one or two good friends or fifty friendly strangers, having a sense of belonging and connection is essential for good health. We are physically distancing to limit the spread of a disease, not end friendship. Keep your connections, call your mom, go for a bike ride with a friend, and say hello to your neighbors. Just leave out the hugs and handshakes for now.

In regard to masks, how about we try and keep it non-political. There are folks who have placed the wearing of masks on the same level as gun rights and free speech. And I get it, feeling like your being made to do something can feel invasive. But masks are not an issue of rights, they are an issue of public health—a temporary measure to help resolve an evolving and changing threat to the well being of friends, family, and self. I personally don’t like wearing one, though I have several and keep them handy in my car and office. I hold no resentments when wearing one into stores, public places, or church. Resentments, anger, indignation are the fuel for anxiety, and, for heaven’s sake, why would anyone want to ramp up their stress level over a mask? It’s okay to not like wearing masks, and, at the same time, be okay with wearing one for the good of others, your own health, or simply because it is a temporary public health rule.

For those of us who have loved the outdoors most of our lives, the healing power of being out in nature is no surprise. I have felt good about seeing people return to or seek out opportunities to socialize and physical distance in nature and not so thrilled about the behavior of a few folks; diapers and garbage left along trails, destruction of vegetation, disrespect of private property, and threatening actions towards others. In some cases, it’s been those who have never been taught good stewardship of our land, water, and air. In other cases, it’s been selfish people who care little about the consequences of their actions. My encouragement to all, old or new to the love of the outdoors, is to develop a passion for stewardship, which is the wise use of and care for our precious natural resources. The old adage “pack it in, pack it out, and leave it better than you found it,” while a great camping motto, is also a necessary step to keep our world clean, and simply put, we need a healthy world to be healthy.

Appreciate your taking the time to read this blog and please go to the Clarion Counseling & Consulting website to view future blogs posted the first of each month. Looking forward to your comments and please contact me if you have any questions about my services or want to set up an appointment.