Mental health break

To get my creative inspiration back, I must disconnect

I ain’t the best relaxer. My preferred holidays are always adventures, and very VERY rarely will I do a feet-up-by-the-ocean-on-a deck-chair kind of break to disconnect. Honestly I couldn’t think of anything worse, but sometimes, I have to do it a little bit – to make my hubby happy.

A break has been very necessary in recent weeks, well months really. Let’s be honest, these last few months have been shit. Really shit. I know I can do better than most at keeping my spirits high in the middle of this global crisis, but I also know sometimes it hits me hard, and well recently, it’s walloped me and I know it’s walloped a lot of other people too. It just never seems to end, does it?

Get on with it!

However, the answer to our global problems is so bleeding obvious and we just need to get on with doing it. Vaccinations everywhere please, get one if you can, and do what is needed to stop the spread. If your country is providing access to vaccines, let me assure you there are a LOT of people wishing they had access to what you can get right now.

And that’s the bit that’s really sucking for me. The people who did the most to keep the virus at bay right from the start, are now facing the Delta backlash, because the rest of the world didn’t do what was needed to keep it under control. And the people suffering the worst long-term impact, are those who can least afford it. Famine is rising everywhere, starvation, economic devastation, death, suicide, despair.

I can’t tell you how crazy this makes me. The ambivalence towards it. The screw you attitude from people in wealthy countries. Because here we have a virus that is killing and making younger and younger people sicker, and we’re not even talking about Long Covid. Those stories are devastating, and I have friends who will never be the same again.

We also read about a country that has tried to keep it at bay, and well, it no longer can. Check out what the Australian Government is contending with. Thanks for sharing this Willie.

Viruses live to survive

A virus always has the potential to mutate into something worse. And here we are and it’s doing exactly what it’s designed to do. Why couldn’t we see this potential back when it mattered? Why couldn’t we understand how virus’ work? Why couldn’t we see how these things keep evolving? It might get better or worse, we just don’t know, but we know it’s not worth messing with, right?

Seriously, how much longer will we play this game? Is the Delta Storm finally enough? Or will it take a worse variant? And therefore, will the poorest of the world continue to be made to suffer, because we can’t get the message?

Because until we all get on board, the pain and suffering will be extended for the people who are my neighbours. People living in developing countries. The national debt is out of control, governments in these parts of the world are struggling and the burden of debt is rising, and the longer it goes on, the worse it gets. These people need it to be over. They really do.

Time for a staycation

This is where my head was at the start of our family holiday. A 10-day break before the boys go back to school and because we can’t go anywhere, we’re doing a staycation in two different parts of Phuket.

We started at the JW Marriott in Mai Khao Beach. This is a favorite hotel, going back to 2004, when Steve and I visited for the first time to celebrate our one year anniversary together.

We’ve been back many times, but this time I was a mess. It’s a hot and steamy time of year, and there was something about the environment that made me feel sick all the time. If I had a meal, it was worse. We ate outside every chance we had – to be Covid safe – and well, eating in sticky humidity is not great.

From a relaxing and detaching perspective, it was a failure. My head was a mess, I was a mess in the heat, and I couldn’t break the mindset I was hoping to break.

And then two days ago, we arrived at The Cove, in Panwa, and it’s three huts (nice huts) directly on the beach. I felt like I could breathe again, and I was finally able to smile. The sound of the sea, the breeze, the peace of it. Yes this is what I needed on this break. Simplicity.

The boys don’t like it. They had a blast at the JW, but Steve and I like it and finally, my mind is calm again and I’m feeling my creativity re-emerging too. It hasn’t been flowing for a while now, something I really struggle with, but it’s also the sign a break is necessary. A change of scene.

That creativity is now laser focused on what more I can do to ensure our neighbours aren’t starving as part of our #OnePhuket community. I’m constantly thinking who else I can approach, as well as creative ways we can raise attention and money to buy food and help those who need it during this very challenging time.

I’m hoping this creative inspiration will soon flow into my work too. I’ve been languishing since I launched my book. So time to get moving on a tonne of ideas I’ve been thinking about. But first, acknowledge where you are, face it and only then can you get back to work.

We must acknowledge our feelings

I believe it’s so important we pay attention to how we’re feeling right now. If you’re like me, it might take you a while to get into the right frame of mind, so don’t give up. Equally, if you are feeling stuck in the intense energy of this time, it’s important not to resist it. What you resist persists.

Feel it and find your way to come out of it. It’s not easy and it can’t be forced. We live in a world that doesn’t like to talk about negative feelings, but how can we not? My process is welcome it. Sink into it. Feel it. Emerge when ready.

We are all fighting against so much, but fighting against negative emotions only makes it worse. You have to feel it before you can release it. The worst thing is getting stuck in it!

You’re not necessarily going to have a beach to visit and that might not be your thing either. Perhaps there’s an idea you’ve wanted to get stuck into that you can focus on? Or a charity you can support in a meaningful way? What will help you?

Just know you’re not alone feeling this way. A lot of us are with you right now. It’s hard and intense 20+ months into this pandemic, with all indications saying we have a very long way to go!

Space away from normality (however that makes sense for you) is so very necessary when despair, lack of hope, or languishing kicks in. I highly recommend it.

Let me know how you’re feeling? Also what works for you to get out of it?

Cheers

Andrea

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