I’m still out of my pre-pandemic routine.
Some days, the struggle feels way too big. And that soothing bowl of ice cream is SHOUTING my name.
For you, maybe it’s wine, chips, fast food, or binge-watching Netflix. Perhaps all of them, depending on the day.
Everything is complicated, and this emotional roller coaster ride is no fun.
What’s weird is that I’m loving summer, yet I feel out of sync.
Can you relate?
My guess is that many of you can. Here’s the good news: you are not alone in this struggle.
What we’re experiencing is known as collective trauma.
There are many types of trauma that may affect an individual’s deep health. By deep health, I mean every component that makes us human: Relational, Existential, Physical, Emotional, Mental, and Environmental.
Everything affects everything, which is why we must look at more than food when we discuss health.
Today, I’m addressing collective trauma.
Trauma is anything that overwhelms our existing resources and ability to cope.
Collective trauma is a psychological effect that destabilizes the foundation of a society or group. The current pandemic falls into this category.
Other examples include: Bombings, natural disasters, wars, and famines.
Collective trauma can also come from violence, abuse, and indignities perpetrated against a specific group. This can happen cumulatively over time.
Before you start calling me “johnny rain cloud” here are some ways to cope.
First of all, by recognizing what’s happening and naming it, we have power over it.
Second, it helps to know that there are lots of us dealing with this. We’re all in this together.
Third, when you need to calm yourself, try exhaling twice as long as you inhale. For example: inhale for 4 counts, hold for 4 counts, and exhale for 8 counts. By extending your exhale, you spend a little bit more time in the parasympathetic, calm-down state.
Fourth, give yourself some grace. Understand that these are trying times, and we are all doing the best we can to cope. Make time each day to do things that bring you joy, even if it’s 20-30 minutes.
And finally, feel free to book a complimentary call with me. I’m neither a trauma expert nor therapist, however together we will come up with a workable plan to help you get back on track—most days, anyway.
Sending you love,
“I am learning to trust the journey, even when I do not understand it.”—Mila Bron