• Caroline Watkins

it's okay to not be okay right now


*Takes deep breath, cracks knuckles*


Hey, everyone.


It's no secret that we are in the middle of yet another challenging week. We are missing being able to see (and hug) our friends, partners, family members and neighbors. Some of us are missing work and going about our normal routines. Some of us are missing our college classes and lives at school.


Some of us are struggling with mental health. And others, me included, are anxiously applying to jobs and praying that we won't receive an email a few weeks later that says that the company we applied to is no longer hiring at the moment, due to COVID-19. And some of us have already been laid-off.


We are especially worried about our loved ones getting sick, from our grandparents to those we know who are on the front lines in hospitals as we speak.


In the United States, we are worried about how things will play out in the next few months, after receiving somber messages from those in other countries who have foreshadowed what is yet to come.


At the end of the day, it's easy to compare grievances with one another. It's easy to say how things could be worse and how we shouldn't be complaining about our personal losses, as small as they may be.


I've certainly done it and you probably have, too.


But we are all worried. And we are all grieving—together.


What's also important to keep in mind during all of this is that we don't have to be "okay" all of the time. We don't have to put on a brave face and pack our daily schedules with to-do lists and productive activities every single week. Sometimes, it feels good to be productive. But on other days, all we can bring ourselves to do is make sure we are eating enough food and getting enough sleep.


When a friend asks you how you are doing, you are allowed to say that you are not in a great place. Let's eliminate our automatic responses of saying "good" or "well" when we are asked how we are feeling or how our day went. Let's be more honest and vulnerable with ourselves and others.


Similarly to how we are all individually grieving right now, we also don't have to feel bad when someone does more than us or talks about how productive their day has been, even if you've been binge-watching Netflix all day in your sweatpants.


It's okay to slow down. It's okay to take a day (or several) to do absolutely nothing, if you are able. This lifestyle adjustment is hard and we don't need to keep agonizing over what we should have done yesterday or what we need to do tomorrow.


I wanted to write this to reiterate my purpose behind writing this series about social distancing. Sure, I might include an article here or there about how to stay focused while working from home, but my main goal with this series and newsletter is to make your day a little bit easier, whether it's making a playlist for you to use as your soundtrack for the day or listing a few creative activities you can do to pass the time.


We are all in this together. And my dm's are always open, whenever you want to talk.


If you are interested in subscribing to my social distancing newsletter, you can do so at the bottom of this page.


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