Finding peace in troubled times

Staying positive

Hello, friends. I hope you are all safe and well. So, how do we all cope during this stressful pandemic? I know many of you have lost dear friends or family and my heart goes out to you. There is never a good time to lose anyone and it’s especially heartbreaking at a time like this. I’m sorry for your losses and I really mean that from my heart. I also want to thank the NHS staff and carers for the tremendous job they are doing in the UK and all other health workers around the world. For anyone undergoing treatment of any kind or surgery right now, I wish you all a speedy recovery. There have been thousands who have beaten this virus and who are on the road to wellness. Hopefully, there will be a vaccine sooner or later and this will be a distant, sober memory.

So, for the rest of us, how do we keep calm and carry on? Have you ever heard the old saying laughter is the best medicine? Never before has there been a truer saying which applies to us all right now. No matter your state of health, tip-top or a little creaky, having a positive mind turns your thoughts into a reality. Laughter is good for the soul and your general well-being. Even a little smile will kickstart you into a happier place. Find whatever works for you and distract your mind. Boost up those around you whenever you can.

If you are housebound with time on your hands and are physically able to do things, then you will have plenty to occupy yourself with. For those who are fortunate enough to have a garden, then you are blessed. Spend this time taking in the safe, fresh air in your own space and create yourselves a haven. Have children? There’s nothing they like more than ‘helping’ and you can easily give them their own patch of garden to plant seeds and watch the flowers grow. Many things are available to buy online and can be delivered safely. It’s the great place for fun and exercise too, for you and for them. Or an ideal place to just chill out.

Stuck indoors without a garden? With youngsters? Then relive your own childhood. Make a tent with any duvet cover. Or use a real one! camp out in the living room. Crawl inside and read stories, colour some pictures. You aren’t spending money like you normally would, why not invest in a few more TV channels? Lose yourselves in films, animals and the outside, fantasy, whatever floats your boat! Make it fun, find the funny things. Get creative in the kitchen. Even the worst cooks can find simple recipes online and kids love to cook fairy cakes, gingerbread men. Spend quality time with them it is good for them, and you.

For older people stuck indoors together, without children, keep yourself occupied. Turn off that 24/7 doom and gloom from the outside world. You don’t have to tune into the news all day long. Now is the perfect time for DIY, sorting out those cupboards, knitting, crochet, working in the greenhouse, or whatever it is you love to do. Read good books, binge watch back-to-back feel-good television. Some of you are a dab hand on a sewing machine, why not try your hand at making masks? There are many hobbies which can fill your time. Make that daily phone call to your family or friends. Stay connected. Nobody has to feel alone, even if you do live alone.

There are plenty of ways we can keep ourselves positive and our minds busy, the list is endless, puzzles, colouring, which is therapeutic, going for that short, safe walk if you are able or petting your cats, dogs and other animals. Love and laughter goes a lot further than you think. Stop, and take a look around you. Find all those things you have to be grateful for and focus on them. What will you do today? Me? I find keeping a routine very helpful even though I’m self isolating. No slopping about in pyjamas! A nice shower is a good start. A small walk for 15-20 minutes, socially distancing. Cooking meals from scratch with lots of herbs and spices has been my thing. It makes you feel better and those unwanted pounds are dropping off. I tell my family every day I love them. I read, I write, and above all for the most part, try to stay calm.

It’s been a trying week in some respects after having an encounter with a man who was acting strange and trying to do us harm. Yesterday he made me angry. Today, it’s all forgotten. The sun is shining, the dog is snoring and I’m going to stay positive and happy. Take care and have a nice week.

Trisha. X

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