Matthew Cuddeback LCSW

The reactions and effects of current global affairs have ebbed and flowed for most of 2020. We have all had our ups and downs of some variety, and with a highly contentious political season in full swing and various other highly challenging social issues continuing to have serious effects it is easy to lose sight of the fact that the weather is changing and in a few months time it will be snowing. This is something I encourage clients to be mindful of as it presents new potentially damaging challenges, so I offer a possible consideration: maybe now is the time for a family vacation for a few reasons outlined below:

  • Good Weather- A lighter, but still important consideration, the weather this time of year can go either way of course, but it is likely not too hot or too cold at the moment. You can hike, kayak, swim, or sit in a warm cabin and read a good book. 
  • Self Care- It can be profoundly easy to be weighed down by so much of fear, anger, lonliness, disappointment, etc. that so many of us might be feeling at the moment. It is important to balance this, you can and should engage with social issues and health concerns, but it is important tp be mindful of where you get this information and how often. For this reason, it can be a good idea to remove yourself a bit from this. We cannot push down and run from the things we are feeling in the long term, but we can and should at times, try and take a break from them by finding things that bring positivity to our life and getting away to an environment you enjoy with people you like being around is a great way to do so.
  • Change of Scenery=Change of Perspective- Cognitively a change of setting is great for growth. It forces us to think differently and see things from a different perspective. If you are feeling stuck or slowed or worn down, mixing up your setting can have a powerful rejuvenative effect.
  • Connection is More Important Than Ever- We can feel so isolated and disconnected when we are isolating from others because of COVID-19. Perhaps now is the time to expand your bubble carefully. Maybe you haven’t seen family in awhile and through careful consideration and planning this is a good way to reconnect. No matter how introverted we are (introvert speaking here) connection to other humans is necessary and very healthy, this is one way you might ne able to do it that feels safe and healthy for you. Plus, your family in a different setting and more focused on the present and eachother is a great way to connect more meaningfully. 
  • We Need Space- Let’s face it, no matter how big your condo or apartment or house are, libing in the city means not living in nature. It is powerful for us to just be able to move more freely. Open the door and walk outside and feel the grass under your feet, trees all around, and nothing but space to move? That is incredibly positive for our minds to feel that space.

Of course, this all comes with the cavweat ot needing to be very mindful about safety when moving around during a pandemic. However, there are ways you might be able to do this and feel safe. Maybe you don’t feel comfortable going somewhere populated, a cabin in the woods might be good. Don’t feel comfortable in a high risk state? Try a different one. Don’t want to stay at a hotel? Maybe camp, rent an RV, or an AIRBNB. Of course, if this is all too anxiety provoking it may not be right for you and that is ok, but it is helthy to consider it. It may also help you feel less like thw orld is closing in around you and there might be more safe options than you expected. Rounding up the kids, getting a cabin, and spending some time out on a lake might just be the best thing you can do for your health at this time.