Reassessing your priorities in the pandemic? Counselling can help
Now we've reached the one-year anniversary of the first lockdown in the UK, it’s safe to say it’s been quite a year.
There is no one in any walk of life, from any background that has not been affected and had their lives changed living through a global pandemic. Everyone will have had mental health challenges also, to varying degrees, and there has been a significant rise in reported feelings of anxiety, fatigue, depression and irritability.
Parents have had to adapt to homeschooling and working from home, people haven’t been able to visit family and many will have lost their jobs. Some of us have had to cope with feeling confined and claustrophobic with others at home. There will also be many single professionals living alone, who have gone large stretches of time without closeness to others and have felt the loneliness and isolation that can bring.
Perhaps your work-life looks completely different now and you have had to adjust and make adaptations. Your university life could be so different from how you pictured it and you are missing social connections. A relationship may have come under strain or you could feel an even closer bond and are ready to commit to your partner.
There will be people reading this who have lived with sickness this past year, be it their own or that of someone close to them. And there will be people who have lost loved ones. Death and grieving at any time is a self-altering experience but, in these difficult times, it's an altogether more complicated and painful affair.
Light at the end of the tunnel
The proposed roadmap out of lockdown indicates that a more normal way of living could be with us again before too long. This has brought hope and suggests that personal sacrifices for the greater good might have been worthwhile.
This news might have also stirred up some questions within you like; What now? What do I want the next year of my life to look like?
While during lockdown there may have been competing priorities that you had to juggle, there will also have been a great deal of thinking time. A life without the distractions and entertainment we are used to having in an unrestrictive world has meant that many people are reassessing their priorities.
While this might have started out as a solo activity, you could be in a place where talking to a professional counsellor or therapist would be beneficial to help you work through and better understand what this means for you. Decisions like changing career, moving, deciding to study or to end a relationship can bring up lots of feelings and conflict.
A counsellor can guide you while you navigate reorganising your life and walk with you as you share your hopes and fears.
Being left with unanswered questions
This past year has been disorienting and you might find it has left you confused and a little lost. Perhaps the thought of the world opening has left you with some unanswered questions and with no clear path as to how you’d like your life to be when it is no longer restricted by lockdown. Counselling is a place to explore and work out any areas where you feel stuck or held back.
Finding out what you want and what is important to you
Knowing what we want can be a really hard question to answer and many of us struggle with being decisive. When we are unclear about what we want, it can lead to dissatisfaction and feelings of unease. Being in touch with our values and what is important to us can make us feel more content.
Perhaps part of what you want is to elevate anxious feelings or to finally speak with someone about your childhood and how that has shaped you. Working with a counsellor can help you to better understand yourself, including your desires which can move you towards living a more fulfilling and satisfying life.
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