Covid-19 Is Stretching Us – How Will Your Life Be Enriched When We Bounce Back?
I was riding my bike through the neighborhood this afternoon as I so often do, but today was not per usual. There were many more people outside than I am used to seeing in the muddy, wet, and chilly month of March in Minnesota, as we all dream about spring finally coming! I could feel a different energy in the air. It reminded me (obviously, I am a baby boomer) of waking up with excitement as a school aged kid early in the morning, hopping on my bike, and waving as I passed by my neighbors out in their yards. It was comforting and I loved the sense of belonging I felt. When I got out of my neighborhood I passed a park filled with parents watching their children as they played from a safe distance. I was mesmerized by the up and down motion of teeter totters and the laughter of the kids. It has been decades since I have seen a park full of kids and parents together, albeit at a safe distance.
Here’s the part that blew me away the most about this afternoon…not one person had a cell phone in hand and without exception, everyone waved and said “hi”. What a different experience it is to read facial expressions and body language as opposed to seeing the top of someone’s head as they stare into their phone! Rather than wondering what each other were thinking, or being preoccupied with ourselves, we were all 100 percent in tune with each other and aware of how the Covid-19 pandemic has changed our lives for now. It relates very similarly to the Chapter 6 of My Book where I mention the impact of cell phones, wireless technology, and the importance of connection to help raise emotionally intelligent children.
Academic research in communication has led to important discoveries in the power of nonverbal communication such as facial expressions, body language and voice tones. And discoveries in neuroscience have revealed that as human beings we all have a percentage of neurons in our brains that imitate each other when we come into contact. We literally have a “blue tooth” connection with each other that transcends language. Our blue tooth connection creates true understanding and empathy for each other as we wrestle this unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic. As I rode through my neighborhood reading facial expressions and body language, I was moved and inspired. There was a strong feeling of support and solidarity. A feeling like we are all in this together and everything is going to be OK. Everyone seemed to genuinely want to connect with and support each other.
Change is hard and can stretch us in ways that are scary and beautiful at the same time. If you’re looking for someone to connect with, try telehealth as a mental health therapy option. We are definitely being stretched by the Covid-19 experience. My hope for us when we bounce back is that we never forget how important it is to connect, be in relationship and understand the experience of others. How do you imagine your life changing for the better when we stretch back?
If you are in need of mental health services, please consider our firm David Hoy & Associates. We offer telehealth and video therapy services to give support during these challenging times. https://davidhoy.com/location/online-video-counseling/
Feel free to check out my book on raising emotionally intelligent children on Amazon Paperback and Kindle. https://amzn.to/3dQpATs