Being a teenager during a global pandemic has been really interesting. It has proven difficult to have the experiences that the common teen would be able to have this year. While it would be nice to live normally, it is simply not an option right now. I figured what better to do than talk about everything surrounding a pandemic during our youth. While it may feel like sometimes you are a little bit more alone than usual, it is important to remember to work on yourself and put your health first. While this pandemic has not been going on for as long as it may feel like, I would like to take the time to share some of the things I have learned during this time.
It is extremely important to use your resources. Reaching out has been stigmatized as making someone “weak”, but that is not and should not be the case. While hanging out with your friends might look a little different, it is important to check up on each other. Some of the things I like to do with my friends are going to a park, finding a swimming spot, hanging out in someone’s backyard, hiking, etc. These are some small things that small groups of friends can do together in order to still maintain the relationship and to have people to talk to about what you might be going through.
Take time for yourself everyday that you have the opportunity. A great thing to do right now is journaling. Pick out a cool journal, a time, and a place and write down how you are feeling. Chronicle what is going on in your life. Things like these help because in the future, you can look back and see how much you have grown from the times you might be facing right now. Go on a drive, walk, run, etc. to help with all of this stress too. It is very important to take even the smallest increments of time out of the day to just breathe and decompress.
Tell others how you feel when you are having a conversation. It may seem silly, but simply expressing how you feel can help others feel closer to you. They also might be feeling the same way. This can help open up a conversation that might not have happened if no one said how they felt about a specific topic. When you express how you feel, do not sugar coat it. Sometimes everyone needs to feel the lows so that they can reach the highs. So, do not feel bad about saying how you really feel. Own it and allow others to understand what you are feeling and experiencing.
Right now, with school, the virus, injustices happening all over, and your personal life, things start to pile up.
These are some tips to making these experiences seem a little better. As a society we are dealing with a lot. These are some of the things I personally have had to learn that I think could be helpful tips for others to hear. Remember to wash your hand, wear a mask, and stay safe. We will get through this!