Social Distancing…Burden or Opportunity?

In some capacity, everyone is feeling the effects of COVID-19 and the need for social distancing during this time across the world. It is clear that this pandemic has dramatically altered our ways of life in some form or another. We may find ourselves thinking: When will life go back to “normal”?

 

There are many factors that may feel unsettling or out of control, and eating disorders may be especially unhelpful in navigating these emotions while practicing social distancing.

 

While it may be easy to recognize the negative impact this has had on all of us, what if we stopped for a moment to acknowledge the opportunities that may have been pushed to the back of our minds in the midst of chaos?

 

That novel gathering dust on the book shelf you never found time to start.

Those photos from vacation that never made it into a scrapbook.

The journal with blank pages, waiting to be filled with thoughts and ideas.

 

When is the last time you allowed your breath to be taken away by a beautiful sunrise?

Or lost track of time reminiscing with an old friend over the phone?

 

How many times have we ignored the small pleasures in pursuit of other priorities in our lives?

 

The sound of a loved one’s laughter.

The smell of homemade chocolate chip cookies.

The sensation of fresh spring air filling your lungs.

 

All of these, in their simplest forms, are opportunities to engage in small moments that have the potential to elicit joy.

 

And in pursuit of finding joy in the simple things in your life, keep in mind the importance of continuing to nourish yourself adequately.

 

Your body still needs food and water every day. Even if you feel like you are not moving as much, remember most of the energy we consume gets used solely to carry out vital processes at rest.

 

Prioritize time for meals and snacks throughout the day. If you are working from home, continue giving yourself a “lunch hour” to stretch and fuel yourself in a space separate from work-related tasks. If you have kids at home, create a fun learning environment for them through cooking and sharing a meal together. Dust off your fancy dishes and tableware to create an esthetically pleasing meal time environment with dimmed lighting, lit candles and relaxing music. Use this time to try out a new recipe or make a childhood favorite dish.

 

Give gratitude to your body for all of the things it continues to do each and every day.

Cherish today for all the gifts it brings and the wonderful opportunity to savor the small moments that previously went unnoticed.