Why I Still Believe in Santa

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We live in an age of disbelief.  In a season traditionally of reverence and celebration, in recent years some may have found under their Christmas trees, Richard Dawkins’ book,“The God Delusion” and Christopher Hitchens’ “God is Not Great (subtitled “How Religion Poisons Everything”).

At age 7, my wide-eyed daughter had been troubled by doubt.  It started after visiting Santa at the mall.  Because she hadn’t decided what she wanted for Christmas, Santa told her, “When you’ve made up your mind, tell your mom and dad.”

After that, she began entertaining conspiracy theories and doubting her own parents.  “It’s you, isn’t it,” she’d challenge me.  “You’re Santa, right?”

I explained to her that the Santa in the mall was just one of Santa’s look-alike helpers and that Santa’s local representatives are human and may misrepresent him.  I have to confess my first thought had been to sue Santa.

Why would he say such a thing?  Was he intentionally downloading his job onto parents?  Are we supposed to e-mail letters to Santa ourselves or line up at the mall again just to tell him what our kids want?

I didn’t return to the mall.  Even with the photo, I’d never be able to identify the right Santa.  They all look the same to me.

Santa’s not the problem.  Like other icons of belief, it’s the abuse of his image by individuals and organizations that confuses and misleads the world.

A child’s belief in Santa parallels cognitive, emotional and spiritual development.  To young children who understand the world in black and white terms, Santa’s an old man in a white beard who lives far away at the top of the world, watching and judging everything they do.

This version of Santa for the simple of heart and mind is a bit petty; he only gives presents to good little boys and girls. In the old days, noncompliant kids would get a lump of coal, which we now know to be carcinogenic. Authority figures such as parents and teachers sometimes leverage this simplistic understanding in order to get kids to behave.

Eventually, most children realize that life doesn’t follow such simple rules.  Some keep getting presents no matter how naughty they’ve been while many nice kids get no presents.

Like parents, commercial institutions seize the Santa image for their own purposes – in this case, to make a profit.  By so doing, they poison everything and contaminate a child’s simple faith.

Many lose faith when they don’t get what they’ve hoped and prayed for.  Commercialism has blurred the distinction between our wants and needs.  We are conditioned to crave for the latest games, toys and fashions.  In the big view of real life, we ultimately receive what we need though it may not have been what we wanted or expected.

As children mature, they scrutinize adult behaviour.  The advice to “do as I say and not as I do” convinces no one.  Many a child has lost their belief in the Tooth Fairy because of a parent’s disbelief.  Again and again, fathers are caught with their hands under their children’s pillows because they themselves could not believe she would come.

As I grew up, I realized that my conception of Santa was too limiting.  Although it’s comforting to imagine his traditional image, I knew he must be more than he appeared to be.  That chubby old man would have died from diabetes or a heart attack centuries ago.

My faith is not dependent on a fantasized image of the North Pole.  If I were to venture to the far north and find no elves, reindeer or Fortress of Solitude, my worldview would not be shattered.

I see Father Christmas all around me, here and now.  My faith is renewed when I engage in the endless exchange of kindnesses and when I witness gifts given from the heart – with special thought, in appreciation of others, and with unbridled and unconditional affection.

Christmas present is not a material thing but it is material to our daily lives.  It is the gift of the moment – what we have now and the relationships before us.  It is the potential of the past realized.  It is tomorrow’s memories in the making.

It is the recognition of the divine in our present lives – in others and in our selves.  It is the acceptance of what is – naughty and nice, faith in the good within us, and love unconditional.

In an age of disbelief, I am a believer.  My faith has been tempered by a questioning mind and emboldened by experience.

Dr. Davidicus Wong is a family physician. His Healthwise Column appears regularly in the Burnaby Now, Richmond News and Vancouver Courier. For more on achieving your positive potential in life, read his blog at davidicuswong.wordpress.com.

Posted in Emotions, Happiness, Love, Relationships | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Good and Bad of Masks and Gloves

Growing up in the 60s and 70s, masks and gloves were donned by my favourite heroes: Batman, Robin and the Lone Ranger. (I’ll include the Green Hornet and Kaito for fans of 60s TV and Bruce Lee.)

Like every other boy, I imagined being a hero, but I never imagined that one day, there would be a pandemic and a surgical mask and rubber gloves would be part of my everyday garb.

Dr Wong as Captain America in PPE

Over the past two months, how we perceive masks and gloves has changed week by week. One thing remains. In healthcare, scrupulous hand washing, surgical masks and gloves were primarily for protecting others (our patients) more than our selves.

For everyone who is not a healthcare provider, masks and gloves – only when used appropriately – do provide protection to others and to some extent the wearer.

BC has managed to flatten the curve (the spread of COVID-19 infections) better than the majority of other countries and provinces due to the sage advice of our leaders, including Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix, to 1. maintain physical distancing of 2 meters (or approximately 6 ft) from others and 2. wash our hands.

As other provinces and states around the world have slowly relaxed physical distancing rules to reopen businesses and other public places, we’ve already seen the second wave of new COVID-19 infections including Germany, South Korea and the US.

We too are at a heightened risk for the second wave if we as individuals and families forget about those two key practices: keeping our distance and washing our hands.

Emerging studies suggest that in those places where everyone wears some type of mask – including simple cloth masks – there is a further reduction in the spread of infection. A prime example is Japan, where cloth masks were worn by everyone in public from the start of the pandemic.

Two months ago, the average person who wore a mask out of the home was perceived as overly anxious. Now that person is seen as sensible.

Moreover, knowing that anyone with an early COVID-19 infection can infect others before they have symptoms, when I see someone with a mask, I recognize that they are protecting others.

We know that COVID-19 is primarily spread by contaminated respiratory droplets released from the nose or mouth when we talk, breathe, sneeze or cough. Physical distancing works because those droplets quickly fall to the ground usually within those magic 3 meters (or approximately 6 feet).

We’ve also told the public that if they do cough or sneeze, either do it like a doctor (into the sleeve over the inside of your elbow) or use a tissue and wash your hands right away.

If someone with a cold, flu or COVID-19 contaminates their hands by coughing, sneezing or touching their mouth, nose or hands, they can contaminate inanimate objects such as elevator buttons, door handles and railings.

When others pick up those respiratory droplets on their hands and subsequently touch their eyes, nose or mouth before washing their hands, they too may become infected.

Face masks also provide a limited measure of protection by the wearer as a barrier to respiratory droplets that would strike our face if we are less than 2 meters from another person. Remember that physical distancing remains your first measure of defence.

Beware the Pitfalls of Masks

  1. They can provide a false sense of security if you ignore keeping your distance.
  2. They pose a greater risk if you frequently touch your mask and eyes.
  3. The outside of the mask may be contaminated if you are too close to others. You must avoid touching the outside of the mask and if you do, wash your hands right away.
  4. Even if your mouth and nose are protected by a barrier, if you are too close to others, your eyes remain unprotected from respiratory droplets. Keep your distance and consider wearing eye protection – sunglasses outdoors, prescription glasses or inexpensive plastic safety glasses from the hardware store.
  5. Kids under two or others with difficulty breathing or who cannot remove a mask by themselves should not wear one.
  6. N95 masks are not needed by people in public places. Please note that the tightly fit, uncomfortable N95s worn by healthcare providers for certain procedures do NOT have valves.

Masks with one-way valves only protect the wearer. A person with COVID-19, a cold or influenza – who wears an N95 with a valve – can still infect others. Keep your distance from others wearing valved masks.

Three Things You Need to Know about Gloves

  1. Gloves provide a false sense of security and are not a substitute for hand hygiene. The cashier handling contaminated objects and cards can transfer respiratory droplets to your card if those gloves aren’t changed or thoroughly cleaned between customers.
  2. If you are wearing gloves, don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth – or phone -before taking them off and washing your hands.
  3. Put used gloves and soiled disposable masks in the trash. Don’t toss them on the ground.

Masks and gloves are the new supernormal of pandemic life.

Though I sometimes have to gown up, I’m grateful that I don’t need to don a cape. As we saw in The Incredibles, capes are just plain dangerous. But you never know, the pandemic is still young and when we run out of gowns, healthcare providers may need to resort to capes and I’ll have to check out the closet of my old bedroom at Dad’s house.

Dr. Davidicus Wong is a family physician. He was the founding chair and lead physician of the Burnaby Division of Family Practice and continues to serve on the board. His Healthwise Column appears regularly in this paper. For more on surviving and thriving during the pandemic, read his blog at davidicuswong.wordpress.com.

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Remembering Mom

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Today is my personal annual day of grief. It is the 17th anniversary of my mother’s passing. On that worst day of my life, she died unexpectedly while doing an exercise class with her friends at the Confederation Seniors Centre.

In a moment, she went from being active and feeling well to unconscious. She received immediate CPR. The paramedic’s report read PEA – pulseless electrical activity. This would suggest that she had a massive heart attack – perhaps due to the sudden thrombotic occlusion of a main coronary artery.

There was absolutely no warning.

She was not fortunate enough to have a gradual narrowing of a coronary blood vessel that would eventually have presented with the symptoms of angina – chest pain with physical activity. That is the usual signal for physicians to request exercise tests and angiograms, allowing us to intervene with bypass surgery or angioplasty.

In fact, she lived an extremely healthy lifestyle and attended to her two atherosclerotic risk factors, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. She felt well. Her memory remained sharp.

She was only 72 (but looked twenty years younger). Looking at this photo taken a month or so before she died, she looked younger than I do now.

Having lost her parents by age 9, she was always health conscious.

She was also socially conscious. She always put the needs of others above her own. She looked after her family, and also her friends, family and community. Her concerns extended to the whole world.

If she were alive today, the sickness and grief that is now pandemic would have affected her deeply.

But she would not be overwhelmed. She had a great heart. She would have turned her fears and sadness into generous action.

That is what she did as a child with her siblings to survive when their parents had died. That is what she always did for us as we grew up. That was her way until the day she died.

My mother is the single most important influence on my life. As human and imperfect as I am, the best of me is because of my mother – who she was, how she lived her life and how she loved.

Since she died, I often wondered how much better our lives would have been if she had not died when she did – my children were still in elementary school and aged 10, 8 and 4.

How many more family dinners would we have shared? Just a few weeks before she died, my mom had made us a wonderful Easter dinner.

She would have come to all of my daughter’s dance, piano and violin performances, my children’s award ceremonies and all of their graduations. She would have been so happy to see them grow up and so proud of the young adults they have become. How many more small and great acts of kindness would they have seen?

She would have been to them – as she was to me – the embodiment of unconditional, limitless and active love; one who sees the best in you and inspires you to be your best; one who gives more than she gets; one who always does the right thing even when no one else is watching.

I have come to realize how lucky I was to have her as my mom in my life even if not forever. Few people even meet one person who loves so much and lives a life of unquestionable integrity.

My mother set the standard of behaviour and caring to which I aspire.

Her legacy is the love that remains in her children and grandchildren to actively give as much as we can to others throughout our lives.

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Coping with the COVID-19 Crisis: You are not alone

DSC04772We live in an extraordinary time with nearly everyone on this planet profoundly affected by the pandemic.

During the COVID-19 crisis, communities around the world are collectively coping with a range of negative emotions: anxiety, panic, boredom, anger, depression and grief.

It reminds me of the Great Depression. My dad was born in 1930 – the first year of an economic disaster that shaped the mood of the world for a decade.

He is weathering the pandemic in his usual resilient way. His generation and the world survived the second world war, many economic downturns and the unpredictable unfolding of history.

He pays attention to the news and is taking the recommended precautions, but he has kept busy looking after himself, staying in touch with friends and family by phone and occupying himself with activities at home.

If you’re feeling stuck at home, try saying, “I’m safe at home”, “I get to stay at home” or “I get to stay at home, safe with my family.” Those who have jobs considered essential services, leave their families each morning and look forward to rejoining them for dinner.

None of us is alone. You are not alone if you need to work outside your home, if you can work from home or if you are out of work because of the pandemic.

You are not alone if you are self-isolating after a return from travel or because you have been diagnosed with COVID-19. Many others have shared or are sharing the challenges of your experience.

You are not alone if you are worried about money because your place of work has closed, you’ve lost your job or business is painfully slow.

One of the keys to managing the stress of difficult circumstances is to recognize where you do have a sense of control. As individuals, we can feel helpless in a pandemic, but there are many things that are still within your control.

By staying home as much as possible, keeping a safe distance from others and practicing good hand hygiene, we can protect ourselves, the people around us and collectively the health of everyone in our community.

We also have control of how we occupy our bodies with activity and our minds with helpful thoughts. We all feel compelled to follow the news, but if we left the TV on all day, we will soon be overwhelmed with bad news.

Take your daily news in small doses – maybe just an hour, when Dr. Bonnie Henry and our Minister of Health, Adrian Dix provide their daily updates.

If you’re at work, recognize that what you are doing is essential for our community and that you are making a difference.

If you are at home, recognize that you are doing your part in reducing the spread of infections in your community. Create meaningful structure to your day. Get up at the same time each morning, shower, change and make your bed. Plan healthy meals and find ways to get the exercise your body needs. Carefully choose the entertainment and information you are exposing to your mind. The goal is to inform and uplift.

Reach out online or by phone to your friends and family. Check up on those you know who need to hear your voice or could use your help.

Those of us in healthcare are committed to caring for our patients and our community. Our hospital healthcare teams have been actively preparing to provide the care that is needed.

We have your back, and we will be here whenever you need us.

Family physicians are still in their clinics each day, looking after our patients by phone or video and when required, seeing patients in person when necessary.

If you have symptoms that may be due to COVID-19, use the BC COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool at bc.thrive.health. By completing it, you will be guided to the most appropriate care. If you are a Burnaby resident or a patient of a Burnaby family physician, use the burnabycoronavirus.com tool.

We are in this together. You are not alone.

Dr. Davidicus Wong is a family physician. He was the founding chair and lead physician of the Burnaby Division of Family Practice and continues to serve on the board. His Healthwise Column appears regularly in this paper. For more on achieving your positive potential in life, read his blog at davidicuswong.wordpress.com.

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An Introduction to Mindfulness (and CBT)

Dr. Davidicus Wong

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MINDFULNESS MEDITATION helps us to centre our minds, increase our awareness and calm the nervous system that modulates how we experience pain and other sensations. The practice of mindfulness teaches us a less reactive approach to the rest of our lives. We become open to accept and experience every aspect of our lives, our selves and our sensations, without clinging, aversion or judgment.

We begin meditation by spending 15 or 20 minutes each day just sitting in a quiet place in a comfortable position. We turn our attention to the natural flow and sensations of the breath without trying to control it in any way. This becomes a safe and calming anchor that we can return to at any time.

We can then turn our attention to sounds as they arise in our immediate environment, just attending to the arising and disappearance of different sounds as they come and go from our awareness. We don’t have to label or identify each sound. We simply remain aware of them as they arise.

We can centre our awareness on different physical sensations in the body, perhaps the pressure at points of contact, warmth, coolness, vibrations, pulsations, tingling and even pain. We can move awareness to different areas of the body, and if a sensation such as pain in one part of the body is difficult to manage, we can shift our attention elsewhere, to the part of the body that is most comfortable or back to the anchor of the breath.

With practice, we are able to maintain awareness and attention to every sensation without reacting to it, without aversion, clinging, judgment or identification. With time, we recognize that everything within our awareness is ever changing; nothing is constant – no sensation (not even pain), no mood, no emotion and no thought.

We are able to attend to each thought as it arises without getting carried away in a train of thoughts or a story in the remembered past or imagined future. We can note thoughts as they arise, without judgment or identification and let them go. We can do the same with the transient feelings and emotions that arise without getting caught up and carried away with them. We experience moods, feelings and emotions but we are not our moods, feelings or emotions. We can see them as transient, temporary conditions like a mist, a fog or a shower. They pass through us or we pass through them.

We can be mindful when walking, attending to the sensations of each step, the sounds and pressures on the feet and the movement of the legs. This becomes a mindful anchor from which what we hear, see, feel and think arises in our open and accepting awareness.

Mindfulness can be practiced while eating, attending to the taste and texture of each bite of food; swimming, attending to the sensations of buoyancy, flowing water on the surface of the skin and rich sounds of moving water and air; and even driving. Mindfulness only begins with meditation. When you apply the healthy attitudes of non-reactive acceptance, gratitude and compassion to everything in your life throughout each day, you will discover a deeper level of peace, happiness and meaning.

Mindfulness when diligently practiced can bring serenity to your mind and body throughout each day – an open, accepting and nonreactive approach to your life. It can foster in you greater compassion for others and yourself.

COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY trains us to uncover our underlying beliefs and assumptions, choose our conscious thoughts, reframe our situation and shape our emotions. We can discover that we can improve our moods, thoughts and function in life through healthy self-care – eating regular healthy meals, ensuring adequate rest, daily appropriate physical activity and spending quality time with supportive friends and those loved ones who naturally lift our spirits. Mindfulness meditation can help us identify unskillful thoughts (those that increase suffering) and help us choose skillful ones.

MORE RESOURCES

Mindfulness Meditation

The Miracle of Mindfulness: An Introduction to the Practice of Mindfulness (Thich Nhat Hanh)

Insight Meditation: The Practice of Freedom (Joseph Goldstein)

Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Awakening (Joseph Goldstein)

Radical Acceptance (Tara Brach)

True Refuge: Finding Peace and Freedom in Your Own Awakened Heart (Tara Brach)

JackKornfield.com, TaraBrach.com Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach’s videos, guided meditations and lectures are available for free on these websites. By listening to these teachers, you will quickly see how the attitude of mindfulness can be applied to your everyday life.

Local mindfulness retreats: Westcoast Dharma Society http://www.westcoastdharma.org

The Practical Science of Neuroplasticity

Hardwiring Happiness (Rick Hanson)

Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom (Rick Hanson)

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Authentic Happiness: Using the New Positive Psychology to Realize Your Potential for Lasting Fulfillment(Martin E. P. Seligman)

Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy (David D. Burns)

Mind Over Mood: Change How You Feel by Changing the Way You Think (Dennis Greenberger, Christine Padesky)

Anxietybc.ca

Mindshift app for smart phones

Checkingin.co

Checkingin is a free self-awareness app for smart phones

Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (a synthesis of mindfulness and cognitive therapy)

The Dialectical Behavior Therapy Skills Workbook for Anxiety: Breaking Free From Worry, Panic, PTSD, & Other Anxiety Symptoms (Alexander L. Chapman)

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Online Resources for Coping with COVID Pandemic Stress and Anxiety (Loraine Araujo, M.Ed., RCC)

Starling Minds 

https://covid19.starlingminds.com/registration/covid19

A free confidential online program to help manage the uncertainty, stress, and anxiety triggered by COVID-19 pandemic. Starling’s program can help you:

  • Understand and manage your mood and negative thoughts
  • Set goals to keep your life on track
  • Maintain healthy boundaries for accessing COVID-19 news
  • Access a supportive, confidential online community for ongoing peer support

Anxiety Canada

https://www.anxietycanada.com/covid-19/

Information and proven coping strategies for managing anxiety related to COVID-19, and in general. It has links to other helpful resources.

 

Parenting

Coronavirus ZERO TO THREE

https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/3210-tips-for-families-coronavirus

Tips for families including age-appropriate responses to common questions, a guide to self-care, and activities for young children experiencing social distancing.

 

Self-Compassion

https://self-compassion.org/

Research-based resources and guided practices to help increase self-compassion, the capacity to be kind to yourself during difficult times.

 

HAPPIFY

https://www.happify.com/ (also available as an app)

Content developed by a panel of scientists and experts, focused on emotional well-being. It covers topics such as gratitude, resiliency and self-care, and it includes activities and games based on positive psychology, CBT and mindfulness.

 

Insight Timer app

Meditation app to help you relax and develop a mindfulness practice. The app features guided meditations, music and talks posted by contributing experts.

 

Just One Thing Newsletter

https://www.rickhanson.net/writings/just-one-thing/

“Just One Thing” is a free e-newsletter, by Rick Hanson, PhD, that suggests a simple practice each week to help bring you more joy, more fulfilling relationships, and more peace of mind and heart. These practices are grounded in brain science, positive psychology, and contemplative training.

 

Need to talk to someone? Find out where to call if you are distressed or worried about someone else.

What is a mental health crisis?

  • Intense anxiety or depression
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts
  • Threatening violence
  • Distorted thinking
  • Self-harming

Emergency mental health services

Call 9-1-1 if you or someone you love requires immediate medical attention for injuries/overdose or the person is at risk of seriously harming themselves or others.

For adults

Fraser Health Crisis Line

604-951-8855 or toll-free 1-877-820-7444

Trained volunteers provide toll-free telephone support and crisis intervention counselling, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can also call for information on local services or if you just need someone to talk to.

Learn more about the Fraser Health Crisis Line.

Culturally sensitive crisis line for Aboriginal peoples

1-800-KUU-US17 (588-8717)

KUU-US Crisis Response Services provides culturally sensitive support and counselling to Aboriginal peoples 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Learn more about Kuu-us Crisis Response Services Line.

Alcohol and drug information and referral service

604-660-9382 or toll-free 1-800-663-1441

Available to anyone needing help with any kind of substance use issues, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Provides information and referral to education, prevention and treatment services, and regulatory agencies.

For children and teens

Kids Help Phone

1-800-668-6868

Toll-free, confidential and anonymous telephone and online counselling and referral service for young people up to age 20, available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Learn more about Kids Help Phone.

Kids Help Phone Online Chat

Wednesday to Sunday, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. in B.C. to connect you with a Kids Help Phone counsellor, on the web or from a smartphone.

Learn more about Kids Help Phone Online Chat.

START Team

1-844-START11 (1-844-782-7811)

Fraser Health’s START program provides assessment and intervention services to children and teens (ages 6 – 18) experiencing a mental health crisis.

  • Monday to Friday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Weekends and holidays: Noon to 9 p.m.

Alcohol and drug information and referral service

604-660-9382 or toll-free 1-800-663-1441

Available to anyone needing help with any kind of substance use issues, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Provides information and referral to education, prevention and treatment services, and regulatory agencies.

 

 

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19 COPING Tips for managing the stress of COVID-19 (Courtesy of Loraine Araujo, M.Ed., RCC)

Loraine Araujo, M.Ed., RCC

Here are some things you can do and keep in mind to help you cope during these challenging times, and some ideas for how you can use your time in a positive way.   

  1. First, know that it is okay to be scared, stressed or overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Stress and anxiety are normal responses to major change, threat and uncertainty. Allow yourself to have your feelings, but make sure to take some actions to help reduce the stress.
  2. Don’t start your day with COVID-19 news. It can wait.
  3. If you’re staying home, create a structure to your days. Decide on what you will do and when.
  4. Schedule time to read/watch the news from reliable sources. Perhaps not more than 1 hour in your entire day. You need to be informed, but it’s not helpful to be overexposed to the news.
  5. If it’s not something you’re used to doing, this may be a good time to start practicing it. Meditation is a helpful way to stay present and grounded during times of stress and anxiety.
  6. Prepare healthy meals (try to avoid watching the news while you eat).
  7. Do something that helps you feel in control, like taking actions to boost your immune system (good sleep, healthy eating, exercise, avoiding smoking and drinking) or doing something to help others, like grocery shopping for an elderly neighbor.
  8. Connect with old friends via phone or video-calling. Check in on them, and catch up about each other’s lives before the COVID-19 outbreak.
  9. If you live with your family and are isolating together, this is a chance to connect and have fun.
  10. If you’re separated from your family, try to stay in touch via phone or video-calling regularly. Telling people you love what you appreciate about them can help you feel closer, even when you’re physically apart.
  11. Stay physically active. Go for a walk in a non-crowded place if you can. Being out in nature is a great outlet for stress.
  12. Learn something new or pick up an old hobby again. If you’re home a lot, it’s an opportunity to learn and create.
  13. Read a book. Check out free digital libraries.
  14. Listen to music or take a virtual tour of National Parks, Museums, etc. Even brief moments of distraction from COVID-19 worries can help.
  15. Allow yourself to have fun. Humour and joy are good for mental health.
  16. Kindness towards others, Self-compassion (kindness towards yourself) and Gratitude have been shown to promote well-being. It’s always a good time to practice all three.
  17. Look for the Good: the heart-warming gestures, the uplifting stories.
  18. Don’t finish your day with COVID-19 News. Practice sleep hygiene and choose something that is soothing (that works for you) before bedtime. Try to get 7-8 hours of sleep every night. It helps reduce stress and strengthens your immune system.
  19. Hang in there! This too shall pass.

 

*If coping strategies are not working, or if you’re struggling with even bigger issues (i.e. job loss, prior mental health challenges), call The Edmonds UPCC to talk to a Clinical Counsellor.

Edmonds Urgent & Primary Care Centre: (604) 519-3787

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What is Mindfulness?

What is Mindfulness

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