“Ask for help. Not because you are weak but because you want to remain strong.”Les Brown
Coping with COVID-19 and learning how to change our lives continues to be a major challenge for all of us – individuals, organizations and nations. The impacts have been all pervading, with little or no respite since it surfaced. From social media, to television, radio and other means of communication, we are inundated with news of frightening dimensions. As individuals we draw fear from these outside sources and internalize the fear to the point of paranoia.
Time has shown that issues of life that are the most difficult to adjust to are the ones that occur suddenly and then get out of our control, like the coronavirus. We have since realized that there is so much confusion and negativity in the world. Our strength is feeble against the tides. We are hedged in. We seem limited in our ability. And even with medical intervention, things are not right, yet.
One vital lifeline that has stood the test of time in periods of crisis is the support we draw from one another. We just cannot overemphasize the benefits of social relationships and the support we get from it.
Over the past year and half, we have found ways to connect to one another. Let’s continue the good we started.
Let’s offer lifelines to others while we also pick up lifelines from them.
Check on our neighbors. These are uncertain times, and your friendly voice may just be what they need to get through the day.
A problem shared is a problem half solved. Share whatever is stressing you or causing tension. We all can do with an empathetic ear every now and then.
Reach out for help if you need it. It’s yours for the taking, if only you’d raise your hand.
Granted, we can’t go out on social visits at this time. Regardless, you’ll be amazed at how much technology helps to connect us.
The song of Bill Withers comes to mind at this time…
Lean on Me
“Sometimes in our lives
we all have pain
we all have sorrow
but, if we are wise,
we know that there’s always tomorrow
lean on me when you’re not strong
I’ll be your friend
I’ll help you carry on
for it won’t be long
till I’m gonna need someone to lean on
Please swallow your pride
it is have things you need to borrow
for no one can fill
those of your needs that you won’t let show”
For new immigrants it’s tougher. Canadians generally keep to themselves which is a cultural thing. Place this side by side, some other cultures, then we understand that a lacuna has been created. The very practical solution is to open up and talk to someone.
Call a friend. Call a counselor.
They are around you. Just tell it as it is. Share your pains, your fears, your grief. If you have lost a loved one, don’t keep it to yourself. Perhaps it’s your job you lost. Or your business and finances have nosedived. Don’t bottle it all in. A problem shared is a problem half solved. Share whatever is stressing you or causing tension. We all can do with an empathetic ear every now and then.
Avoid the slippery slope. If you are suicidal, say it.
If you need someone to check on you, say so. Use the 911 if you don’t know anyone else.
Majority of the burden is lifted off you the moment you share your pain and concern.
To conclude, make that call now. Chat away…Ping away…Add a friend…Send a voice note…Place a video call…Reach out anyway you can. Just reach out. Of tremendous help at this time is our online community where we unashamedly support one another. Join our community at https://immigrantlife.ca/community.
Meet real people who are just like you and let’s provide support for one another.
Written by Yinka Bakare