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11 Feb 2022, by Caroline

Can I relax now?

The coronavirus pandemic led to the whole world shutting down. We were all closed off from the outside world and our ‘pre-pandemic’ routines for long periods of time. When restrictions eased, we were so used to staying indoors as it became a habit, with many of us experiencing a new found anxiety of leaving our homes. This blog shows that it is okay to have these feelings and should take life at our own pace.

I am an introvert and I have to admit I like being one. Home with a good book, or a good film is just the idea of a great night for me.

Staying in became a habit

When all the lockdowns began and more and more restrictions happened I, like so many of us, hated the thought that I couldn’t just go out wherever and whenever I wanted. I thought then, maybe I’m not so much the introvert I thought I was. The world became so much smaller and so quickly too. The outside world started to become a screen. The rest of the world could be contacted via a phone, zoom, social media, anywhere except face to face.

I was determined to do the right thing and follow the advice and the rules, but I decided I would never get used to it. That way when restrictions would be lifted I could just go back to how I was before right? But it hasn’t happened quite like that.

Without me knowing or even being aware, I have become used to thinking twice before I go out. Do I really need to pop to the shops today? Is it really that urgent? Couldn’t I just order it online and get it delivered? Yes, that would be much better.

It was quite a moment for me when I realised that not only had I gotten used to staying in but it had become a habit. When did it happen? When did this become the norm? I have no idea but once I had this realisation, I quickly wanted to rectify it. And that’s when I learned that I’m finding it hard, and I was so frustrated and angry with myself. How could I have let this happen? Why can’t I go back to just going where I want without feeling anxious? And why do I keep making excuses not to go out?

Going at our own pace

When I take a step back and think about it, these feelings are completely normal and understandable. The planet has been going through such an ordeal. Its not like the movies. This pandemic didn’t end after two hours and a load of popcorn. We have all been through something that none of us could have prepared for and it’s going to take time to feel relaxed again. To feel carefree again. There is no timeline we can follow that says by the end of next month you’ll feel right as rain again.

We are all unique and we all have the right to have as much time as we need. To me, a baby step is as big and as grand as a giant leap and every step we take, at our own pace and in our own time is a positive and something we can acknowledge. Even the days when we don’t feel like it, we are all doing amazing, and together we will keep doing amazing.


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