Dr. Cheryl Greenberg, Ed.D., works as a coach, or guide, for seniors and their families as they consider and plan for changes in their personal and work lives. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 336-202-5669.
We have all just experienced an enormously challenging time and now COVID variants are causing new concerns and procedures for staying safe. We have lived through other historical crises, but the COVID-19 pandemic is exceptional.
Telling your story can reduce your concerns and help others.
The president of the University of Pennsylvania, Dr. Amy Gutman, wrote that COVID-19 took us unaware because we did not know the stories of people who experienced earlier crises. She suggested that if we had known how people dealt with the 1918 flu pandemic, for instance, we would have been more comfortable with distancing, masks, and even being afraid. Today, Penn students are writing about their experiences, their stories, to help future generations with a different, still unimagined crisis.
What is your story? What can you tell your grandchildren about what you did, how you felt, and what you were proud of as you dealt with the pandemic?
What have you done differently because of the pandemic?
How have you felt about social distancing, working at home, using Zoom for get-togethers, and masks?
Did the COVID experience change you? How?
Telling your story about the COVID-19 experience can also help you process your feelings as you make plans for moving ahead.
Many people are still feeling anxious. Looking closely at current information about ways to reduce risk can help you reduce some of the tension.
Many people are cautious about returning to work, cultural events, and sports venues. Thinking about what you must do versus what you want to do will help decide on logical next steps.
Everyone has found new ways to stay engaged and connected, even from a distance. Telling your story will highlight for you the creative ways you continue to be productive and in touch with others.
The richness of your story will help others find strategies for dealing with crises and remind you of your rightful pride in navigating these times.
Share your story with a loved one. I would love to hear your story, too!