Stop Distracting Yourself From Living

Coral Gables Counseling Center - Wednesday, February 02, 2022
By Tiffany N. Perez

The end of last year was a challenging one. With new strains of the COVID-19 virus on the rise, many homes were affected during the holidays, preventing many of us from getting together with our loved ones.

bistro chairs for two

Through the chaos, it has been difficult
to remain present;
to find enjoyment while having to isolate; and
feeling lost when routines have been abruptly halted.

As a result of these changes, we look to social media and streaming to keep us informed, to keep us entertained, and to ultimately keep us distracted from what we feel we are missing out on or as my teen clients like to label as FOMO (fear of missing out). With all these distractions at our fingertips, it is easy for us to lose touch with reality, with our day-to-day, and more importantly, to lose time with the ones we love. With all these distractions and noise that we surround ourselves with, it is easy to lose connection to others and within ourselves.

We waste far too much time searching our social media outlets and streaming apps for distractions that prevent us from being capable of self-reflection. We end up getting caught in an endless feed loop of mosaic pieces of unrealistic depictions of other people’s lives, while simultaneously fueling our own self-loathing, self-doubt, and overall diminishing our self-awareness.

It’s understandable why we use these tools to distract ourselves, but it is time to recognize how it may be contributing to our feelings of dissatisfaction. It’s time to reflect on what brings us true joy. And, YES this is possible to achieve even during the pandemic. We must start reestablishing the tools that bring us tranquility, connection to others, and most importantly, connection to ourselves once again. This can present itself as a daunting task when considering the limitations during this pandemic.

There are still many ways to safely reconnect with others and with ourselves. Take this time to dive into what excites you!

  • Mealtime during the week can be the perfect opportunity to reconnect with someone you care for, whether it is your partner, kids, extended family, or roommates.
  • Cooking delicious new recipes not only shows love for those you cook but for yourself.
  • Going for walks in your neighborhood or at your local park. Too often we take for granted the beautiful landscapes that Miami has to offer. There are so many bike and walking trails, and ocean fronts closer than we think.
  • Finding books on topics of interest can be a great pastime that helps us strengthen our own creativity while broadening our understandings.
  • Creating routines that include breathing exercises, meditation, journaling, and other mindful strategies to further cultivate our peace of mind can be useful during this pandemic in building our resilience.
  • Exercise could also be a wonderful tool to alleviate stress and frustration while releasing endorphins or “happy hormones” to help us feel more in control and at peace.

As seen, there are many different tools we can utilize to stay connected to ourselves while simultaneously finding ways to safely connect to others around us.

The most important takeaway is to remember to take time for yourself. Treat yourself to things that bring you the most joy and comfort. It is easy for us to get lost in distractions but, it is the present moment that you have the most control of, and investing time and energy into yourself and your relationships will have the ultimate payoff.


“When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.” – Helen KellerLocked red door