Bad news: The Covid’s kicking our emotional asses. Good news: It’s time to kick back at it.

A recent poll sponsored by MessageEnvy has cast a light on the difficulties we’re having as part of the Covid pandemic, showing that it’s not just the financial and health-related stress we’ve had to deal with, but a litany of other stresses as well. Among the findings:

  • 40% haven’t recognized themselves in a mirror.
  • About half have negative feelings about their bodies or don’t have the same level of confidence they had before.
  • Of the 55% who said they’ve never had chronic pain, about a third say they’re feeling that pain now.
  • Almost half (47%) said their body is aching in new ways.
  • 58% said their new normal is inflicting wear and tear on their bodies.
  • Half said they feel drained by the general stress of the Covid pandemic while 46% said it’s the sameness that’s affecting them (testify!).
  • 31% want to obtain mental health counseling.
I could’ve put the Limu Emu here, but I’m not evil.

It’s reasonable to expect that the last 13 months have added weight to our existence. We’ve going through a pandemic, extreme (for this country) racial tension, an economic crash, and watched as this country came the closest its come in at least 150 years to a partial collapse.

The last 13 months, captured in one picture

Even now, as the rate of vaccination is increasing, it’s starting to look like we might not have the clean exit from the collective Covid imprisonment that we’ve been wanting. Though time will tell for sure, there’s a constant murmur that the increase of variants will eventually confound our vaccines and send us closer to square one than anyone feels like going.

If you aren’t feeling stress or concern, then you either have the greatest relationship with God in the history of Christendom, or you aren’t paying attention.

It’s reasonable to feel one or several of the things listed above. The sameness is really affecting me. Working from home is awesome, but it was nice to go into the office every now and again, just to be able to do it.

Of the bullets listed above, the last one is the most hopeful–almost a third see there’s a problem and want to do something about it.

A third want professional help. Bob Newhart’s happy to pitch in.

That’s the part we seem to forget sometimes.

If you’ve put on the Covid 19 (pounds), you have options. As winter recedes into the past, it’s easier to get outside. Just feeling sun against your skin is a plus. Considering that summer heat’s still a ways away, now’s the time to get out. You don’t have to run a marathon, but maybe a ten-minute walk’s a good place to start.

Diet’s always been a bitch for me. I certainly don’t eat the way I did when I was 17 (or 27), but keeping clean’s still a struggle for me. It’s a struggle worth having.

If nothing else, run the vacuum cleaner.

Personally, I’ve made a point the last several weekends to do something useful. I exercise, but I’ve also been making stuff. Just this morning, I ironed my two Hawaiian shirts that need it because I like wearing them.

Though the ghost of John Hillerman may yell at me and take away the wine cellar

We’re not helpless against the Covid or whatever level of lockdown we’ve decided to place ourselves under. Individually, we can affect every one of the maladies listed above, including chronic pain (food choices are central there).

Even if we have to fiddle around with stupid stinking Covid variants for longer than we want, the darkest part’s over. Now’s the time to start planting seeds for the best post-Covid life possible.

But the government can’t do that for you. Your preacher can’t do that for you. Neither Oprah nor Tony Horton can do that for you.

It’s up to you.

What do you do?

About Chris Hamilton

Chris Hamilton is a writer trying to make the next step, to go from pretty good to freaking outstanding. He's devoting himself to doing the work and immersing himself in writery pursuit. He also hasn't quite mastered this whole Powerball thing, and still has a pesky addiction to food, clothing, and shelter, so he has to work, too. Blech. View all posts by Chris Hamilton

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