Making Lemonade out of Lemons

Coral Gables Counseling Center - Wednesday, March 18, 2020
By Mirta Pont, LCSW,

two lemons

I was thinking today of how many times I’ve wanted to have some time to just be home: to clean out my closets, organize my office, watch a movie (without feeling guilty), and just putter.

Well, now I have that chance and so do many others. One way to deal with this pandemic forcing people to stay home is to focus on the things that we do have control over. Many times I’ve sat around my house or yard and thought, “When I have time, I’m going to….” Well, the time has come. Something I enjoy doing is going out for walks. I’ve seen many people doing the same thing lately. Walks are therapeutic by the way. Not only do you get exercise but it helps people work through anxiety.

I remember when my kids used to stay home, we’d find things around the house for them to do: working in the yard, cleaning their rooms, cooking/baking together or just plain old playing board games together. Instead of panicking, focus on the time that we are given to be with our families and make the best of it. This too shall pass.

I don’t know if it’s our culture that stresses work at all costs, but it’s not surprising that we have hit a crisis point. When I worked in the school system, many kids were sent to school very sick. Teachers also came to teach when they were sick. Everyone got sick. I remember using a lot of hand sanitizer back then too. I think this virus has made us all go back to basics: When you’re sick, stay home.

Cleanliness has to take center stage again. Many times I’ve gone to restaurants that have dirty bathrooms and floors.

Ways, that individuals can navigate this time with less stress is to limit the time you spend watching the news. One segment a day is enough (just to stay informed). Also, use prayer, meditation, and/or mindfulness to quiet the mind and relax the body. I truly believe that if people stay calm and take precautionary, common-sense measures we will all be back to normal.