Your goal-getter-girl who believes that compassion, empathy and kindness go a long way.
Be kind, because kindness breeds kindess
Coronavirus did not just take lives, but it took our dreams, plans, and livelihoods
COVID-19 changed everything for us. Just like how Thanos snapped his fingers, everything was gone in an instant. Everything has suddenly changed. We used to have plans for travel, outings, vacations, business trips, etc . And now, poof, it's all gone. We can no longer do the things we used to do - going to the park to walk our dogs, hustling with the commute, going to the malls and other social activities. Our once normal lives became not so normal anymore. Suddenly, we're forced to adapt to this 'new normal' wherein we practice 'physical or social distancing', or we need to get used to seeing people smile through the back of their face masks, or how we can no longer hug and kiss our grandparents since they are the most prone to virus. This nightmarish crisis has affected and continues to us in ways we never thought possible. Mental health issues such as anxieties, depression, arise during times like these.
These are trying times. Everyday is a struggle mostly during this global pandemic. Coronavirus did not just take lives, but it took our dreams, plans, and livelihoods. Some lost their jobs due to layoff and retrenchment amidst the pandemic, some lost their loved ones due to the virus, some are anxious with what's gonna happen next or if they're gonna catch the virus, some are just trying to survive. Some countries like New Zealand, Taiwan, South Korea, Germany, Denmark, Finland, and many more were successful in battling with this crisis. Kudos to them! While some countries are still trying to outsmart this pandemic.
Of course, we can't help but not be not anxious in times like these. What if we caught the virus and we're asymptotic? Or what if some of your friends and loved ones have it? There might be endless questions running right through our minds right now, so here are some practical tips on how to be kind to be kind to ourselves during a pandemic.
Practical tips for the young ones and young at hearts
1. Don't be too hard on yourself
- This is for those who are pressuring themselves to be good and productive at times like these. We keep seeing posts from our friends that they learned something new or a new skill or they have used their time to be productive. Good for them. But right now, it's not a race or a competition on who's getting ahead in life or who's winning. Let's be happy for the success of people. Their victories matter, your victories matter. Work at your own pace. Where you are going is what matters most compared to your pacing. After all, we're all trying to survive this pandemic. You can be kind to others, but especially, be kind to yourself. Reminder, you are worthy regardless of your productivity. You are worthy, you are loved, you are an amazing person and that's on period.
2. Start small
- If you're determined to learn a certain skill, don't be afraid to start small. A friend once told me that those big companies, and corporations started from scratch too. But what's the difference between them and us? They took a leap of faith and started somewhere, and started small. This is where we can see that a progress is a progress. May it be a slow progress, or a fast progress. A PROGRESS IS A PROGRESS. Start small and steady, and do not doubt your progress. We can also start small by fixing our room, organizing our stuff, or whatever it is that you want to do. The moment you get and decide to do something today, you are already starting small. You'll soon see that forward is forward.
3. Instill hope but be realistic
- We've been taught before to be happy all the time, or positive vibes only regardless of the situation. That's good but it's wrong. The more we say 'Be Happy', yes, it's stirring up hope, but doesn't it invalidate feelings and can be harmful for us? We can't be happy all the time because that would just lead to toxic positivity. but False positivity is toxic positivity. Toxic positivity is forcing us to deny emotional dispositions. I saw a tweet before regarding toxic positivity 'I think there's a difference between being optimistic and being overly positive. Being optimistic gives you the drive to change a system, while toxic positivity means you're just adding glitter to a problem. I can't see the problem with all that glitter on top of it.' If we have seen the movie Inside Out (2015). This movie taught us that we can't be happy all the time, and we need sadness in our lives. An article also says that we need positivity that is grounded, positivity that recognizes and accepts negative emotions as valid and necessary, positivity that cares, positivity that transforms, positivity that encourages self help if needed, and positivity that heals (https://www.rappler.com/views/imho/261558-opinion-how-practice-non-toxic-positivity) The kind of positivity that we need is genuine and uplifting. Saying things like 'Okay, you're going through this, but we're gonna get through this together' or 'This is a tough time, and I may not understand what you're going through, but how can I help you?' or even words as simple as 'I'm here for you, I believe in you, and you are never alone'. These words could mean a lot and that's why it's important to be hopeful but be realistic.
4. Be involved
- This is also one of my advocacies - to be aware of what's happening, not just in the mental health issues but also with the current news about politics. Even at the midst of a pandemic, take a stand and let our voices be heard. As millennials, we can make a difference and we are changing the status quo. Use your platforms to be a voice of those who are oppressed. Let's not turn a blind eye on what's currently happening. Most of us are privileged that we have a roof above our heads, food to eat, and internet connection and the likes. But let's not also forget those who are oppressed and who are in need. They don't have a voice and they need our voices more than ever. Kindness breeds kindness. We are and we will be the generation that will show the world that kindness is free.
5. Allow yourself to grow from your mistakes
- Of course, we've had mistakes before, and there may be times that we condemn ourselves and self-guilt before. But this is just to remind you that your mistakes do not define you. You are not your mistakes. You are a good person who sometimes makes bad choices, but that doesn't mean that you are a bad person. You are much greater than that. Do not let the mistakes of the past rob you off from the joy of your present and future. The more you meditate on your mistakes, the more that it will tear you down as a person. and you're so much more than that. Allow yourself to grow from your mistakes. You are still a work in progress. Apologize, accept that you cannot undo things, and all you can do is to move forward and forgive yourself because you deserve peace and happiness. You can start again.
The fight for the coronavirus is still far from over. Things will not suddenly go back to normal in a few months, heck, or even years. This, too, shall pass and we're gonna get through this together.
Here's a video of my vlog guesting on how to have a positive well-being during this pandemic (finish until the end for more bonus tips)
Genne Arcangel from Philippines on June 25, 2020:
"Instill hope but be realistic." YES. YES. YES.
Liza from USA on June 22, 2020:
Everyone is facing a crucial time during the pandemic, but we grieve differently. Thanks for sharing the encouragement to the people, Ahlgilyn. Hopefully, we all will be kind to each other.
Maureen Glover on June 22, 2020:
Very well said Ms Ahlgilyn.
Ahlgilyn Cabanado (author) from Philippines on June 22, 2020:
Thank you for all your comments. I appreciate that you read my articles. Stay safe!
Hari Prasad S from Bangalore on June 22, 2020:
A positive post. Thanks :-)
Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on June 20, 2020:
Thanks for sharing.
Karlo Palmado on June 20, 2020:
You should do more interviews, the world needs more of this perspective.
Ahlgilyn Cabanado (author) from Philippines on June 20, 2020:
We need more kindness these days. Thank you, Eric.
Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on June 20, 2020:
Well done. Certainly a good perspective.