Hi friends! My goal for my blog is to be a resource for engaged and newlywed couples, but every once in awhile I like to pull the curtains back a bit and share a little bit more about me. I’ve talked a lot about how this pandemic has rattled the wedding industry, how to make the most of your engagement season, and how to keep the dating vibes going during quarantine. But today, I’m sharing from my heart.
This COVID-19 season has been hard, for so many reasons. I’m a small business owner in the wedding industry, which of course has been hit hard. I also have a two year old toddler who we’ve had to keep cooped up in a house for weeks on end, which is not fun for her or her parents. Now that we’re five months into Shelter in Place, I’ve shifted my perspective to see and understand how I can have a healthy lifestyle even when everything around me is in chaos.
While I’d much rather talk about the tips and strategies to help you make the most of your experience, I also know there is more to our lives right now. So after doing a little reflecting, I wanted to share five lessons learned during quarantine:
1. Limit screen time.
For some people, social media is a place to process their thoughts and opinions. For me, I prefer to do this in conversations off of the internet. I found it extremely helpful for my mental health to limit my social media time because every time I went on, I would begin to get confused about what I thought and felt. Other people’s thought process began to interrupt mine and the result wasn’t healthy. I welcome other opinions and perspectives, but not in a space like social media where you don’t have the luxury of nuance and conversation. Once I started limiting my screen time, I regained balance in my mind and a healthy perspective of what was happening around me.
2. Routine as self-care.
I’m an Enneagram 3 wing 2, so self care is actually kind of hard for me. I’m not good at caring for myself or making my needs known. For me personally, self care looks like getting my nails done, getting a massage, or taking time to myself. But those things are all taken away right now. I had to learn that creating a healthy routine for my day was how I could best care for myself. If I wake up and jump into the day without getting centered, then the uncertainty of our country and the latest state mandates are going to put me into panic mode for the rest of the day. I had to create a routine for myself and for Billie so that I can have a healthy perspective throughout all the changing news.
3. Learning how to disagree with people and still love them.
Never in my life have I been inundated with so many opinions on…EVERYTHING. We are all faced with so many opinions right now, and there are some I don’t agree with. But I’ve had to learn how to respect their perspective and love them anyway. For me that looked like not posting my opinion on social media. I had to realize that the best thing I could do was still love them, even though they thought very differently than me.
4. It’s okay to not be okay.
Again, I think I’m gonna bring my Enneagram 3 into this. As an achiever it’s really hard for me to admit failure. My definition of failure is not being okay, not having it all put together, and not being on task or on schedule. Watching my schedule literally fall apart week by week after having it so very carefully planned out has been devastating to my personality. There were some really hard days that I had to face. If I had not faced them, I would be denying myself the opportunity to learn and grow from the things that were extremely hard for me. I accepted that some days are just going to be hard and tough, but that I’m going to allow myself to feel those feelings.
5. I can endure more than I think I can — and so can you.
As I prepped for this blog, I looked back at a journal I wrote in April of this year when we had been in quarantine for about seven weeks. I was over it. Crying out to God, asking him when this was going to end, I felt so hopeless. I couldn’t wait for June because at that point, June was everything. The virus was going to be eradicated and we were going to be on our merry way. And here we are in August nowhere near the end. I can withstand the constant changes to my business and this new normal. It really is mind over matter. My perspective can supersede what’s going on around me, and so can yours! Realizing that while I can’t control the pandemic but I CAN control my mind gave me freedom to persevere.
I’m going to take these five lessons into the rest of this pandemic season, and probably tack on another five lessons to go with it.