As the world continues to open up to the things we’ve missed and loved—restaurants, shopping, and traveling–there will be things that may take more time for people to get comfortable doing, and it will happen at different rates for everyone. I can’t say exactly what things will be uneasy for most people, but in my professional opinion, it will include the ways in which we engage each other.
For example, some of the fears people have shared with me about returning to the office have included things like being exposed to too many people at once. Look, the truth is the pandemic is still here, no matter what the ‘gram and some news outlets have been flaunting. Yes, fewer cases of the coronavirus have been reported, but it has not stopped impacting people’s lives. If I had to guess what will most likely be the setback of this virus, it would be all the re-engaging that could uptrend the numbers to staggering levels that would send us back inside. So, what do we do with this angst? How should we handle the numerous ways people are going out into the world, unmasked, masked, in close quarters, touching each other, sharing space again? I’ve listed a few ways you can plan for safety in my “how to listen to my inner wisdom” list below:
- Listen to your intuition. I know this isn’t easy for everyone, but, one way to tune inward is by asking yourself the question of how do you feel about doing any number of things you’re called to do—return to work, school, and playdates in groups?
- Have a prevention plan. What would help you feel safeguarded against being too close to others? Is it carrying a mask as backup, or only wearing one indoors? Is it having hand sanitizer, gloves and wipes when you travel short or long distances? You may want to store sanitary products in a fanny pack and have it by the door of your home so you can take it when you travel.
- How will you greet people? Are hugs with familiar people ok? What about physical touch only with people you know have been vaccinated? How about you ask people you encounter what safe touch practices they employ? Gauge what you think is best for you, be up front with folks, and if your boundaries change, let people know.
- It may be a bit jarring for a while if you see people sharing food, or personal items, or even coughing without covering their mouth again. What do you do in either one of these cases? Well, I don’t recommend you call them out for it, unless it personally affects you. The way people have been on edge it’s best to er on the side of psychological, emotional and physical caution. So, if you see something, do something. But, for yourself, that is, first. That might include putting distance between you and others if it’s possible. Or walking another way, or sanitizing yourself and your personal work area etc. We will see a lot this summer and how it will affect our psychology will continue to be seen. In the meantime, know that you’re not helpless. You can do what’s in your control to protect yourself. And should you feel a loss of safety or support, talk to someone you trust, or at least someone who has authority such as your manager at work, or your confident friend. Do not keep it inside.
Until next time Village,
*This blog is about becoming free. It’s a reflection of introspective thoughts and experiences that have crossed miles of self-discovery. I created this blog to inspire others to live life with less self-criticism, judgment and openness to new experiences. May you find that you learn how to live a life by design and on your own terms!*