With the horrifying violence going on in the Boston area, you may, like me, at times feel rattled or sad. It is natural to care for the people whose lives have been damaged or lost through these events, and to wonder where these events might lead. Although it may seem like the world has gone awry, we can and should maintain our personal well-being. Here are my thoughts and actions for coping:
First, I have checked on my friends in the Boston area. Having verified they are all OK, I feel relief.
I have continued to pursue the hobbies I love. Yesterday I woke up early to play my guitar, which brought me some pleasure and satisfaction.
Exercise has always helped me stay on an even keel, and now is no exception. This morning I ran for half an hour, getting my blood moving and releasing endorphins. Now I feel calm and energized.
I have continued to do my job. My work needs me, and is meaningful to me. When I am working, my mind is on my work.
I have avoided too much contact with the news media. I check the news once or twice daily, then move on. Instead of listening to only news on the radio, much of the time I listen to music I like.
I have continued to maintain my social activity. Knowing about the Boston events has actually increased my appreciation for the people I love, and I have spent quality time with my family and friends. We talk about things that matter to us, and our everyday lives. This has strengthened me.
If you have no one to talk to, reach out to someone. Just about everyone you have contact with is worth at least a few moments of conversation. For example, when I shop for groceries I often shoot the breeze with the checkout clerk. These friendly interactions create a lift that lasts.
And, know that there are resources that anyone can access if you ever feel really down. The national in-crisis support line is at 800-273-TALK (8255).
All the best,