Now it is clear that the coronavirus’s impact on society is not going to go away any time soon, we are all looking at how we can adjust to the restrictions in a sustainable way.
This means accepting that certain stresses, demands and difficulties are here for the duration. Coping with these challenges is not always easy, and we might need a bit of extra support.
One excellent source of guidance is My Internal World, a recently-developed online resource which offers tools and techniques to strengthen your emotional resilience – and it is available free of charge until June 21st at https://www.myinternalworld.com/.
There’s normally a monthly subscription of up to £10 to access to My Internal World’s wide range of information and exercises, which can be tailored to your individual needs by a detailed online assessment. Now developers Julian Hall and Bregje Fisk are waiving the charges in response to the Coronavirus crisis.
While the website aims to enhance many aspects of emotional wellbeing, unsurprisingly the resources dealing with stress and uncertainty are most popular at the moment.
The insights and exercises on offer really can make coping with daily life easier – if you actually follow through with them.
A good way to do this is to find a “wellbeing partner” who also wants to develop their own emotional resilience, and agree to check in with each other regularly by phone or video link about what actions you’ve taken and what results you are getting. Changing how you approach life can be uncomfortable, so it’s good to have some mutual cheerleading.
It’s vital that you create a safe space for these chats – otherwise they’ll do more harm than good. The most important guideline is to avoid criticising each other, even slightly.
Focus on noticing your partner’s wins. When they are disappointed with how they are doing, just ask “what makes it difficult?” and “what might make it easier?”
Thoughtfully caring for ourselves and each other will get us through these challenging times – and build internal resources that will serve us well for the future.
Karen Bray (MBACP) is a counsellor with a private practice in Bath. Her website is at www.karenbray.co.uk.