There’s that word again. Any word with pandemic in it sort of conjures up mental apprehensions that sound like: “Ugh, mumble mumble, Oh no. What now.” Those are the symptoms.
These symptoms can evolve into a bad attitude that evolves into an even “badder” attitude. If not that, Pandemic-itis can manifest itself into a “malaise”, (You can look it up.) of uneasiness, restlessness, and discomfort. It’s that feeling of “enough already”. (OK, now you don’t have to look it up.)
So, what is the treatment? Well, you have to do a “head-job” on yourself. It means having one of those “Knock it off and put your big boy or big girl pants on” talks. (Just remember, it’s ok to talk to yourself as long as you don’t start the conversation.) Treatment comes in two ways. One is to heal yourself, with a sort of positive self-talk. It’s that discussion you have with you where you re-identify those things that are in your control and those that are not. For example, you can control how you choose to interact with the world around you, one person at a time. Secondly, you can make a conscious choice of how you will “treat” the world of people that you interact with.
What does “treating the world of people you interact with” look like? Well, (get ready for it…) The pleasant expression, on your face doesn’t even have to be a full-blown smile. But it’s definitely not a snarl or scowl. It is understood by each receiver as a message that you have control over sending. Your smile or pleasant expression may not irradicate pandemic-itis, but it can change somebody’s day. That is in your control.
In these “Ugh, mumble, mumble, Oh no times”, making eye contact can be powerful medicine. Try it. See if it gets shared. If you are really brave, calling a person by name can often make them feel so good, that they will share what you did with family. That can be healing all by itself.
And, there’s a funny thing about this treatment regimen, it’s that it has a boomerang effect. That dose of a smile or pleasantry can help both of you deal with “Ugh, mumble mumble, Oh no. What now.”
Go ahead take your medicine.