How will I/we show up in this unprecedented time? Let’s face it we are all masking something right now whether it be physically wearing a mask to protect ourselves and others, refusing to wear one, or frankly, masking our emotions. Regardless, we are all dealing with this crisis of understanding.
We have to wear physical masks almost everywhere we go nowadays. I love to look at the masks that everyone wears, it is one way to outwardly show one's personality or style. I do however wonder and stop to think what are people hiding behind the mask?
I believe that we go through a sensory and emotional journey to get us to what is behind our masks. I’m not just talking about nose and mouth, but what are the feelings that we keep from the world behind our masks? It’s really easy to keep the way that we are feeling hidden. Do you feel sad? Happy? Lonely? Anxious? The good and the not so good emotions are difficult to decipher. However, I believe that we can connect with other people safely through and with our masks.
As we enter and continue to get lost in the months of COVID I think it’s important to do a pre-fall check-in. Usually this time of year, people are dreading the Summer ending and the thoughts of obligatory work and school routines, but this year I find my clients looking forward to taking on another season. Regardless of what mask you might be wearing how do you want to approach this new season? Obviously, this year is going to be completely different than past years. What will the holidays look like? Will our children trick or treat? Will we celebrate with extended family and friends and will we join in the community? How strange is it to ask these questions as I start to see some of the holiday decorations fill the stores. I’m sure several questions are buzzing around your mind that may be contributing to the multiple different emotional masks that we wear.
The transition of wearing masks can be a difficult and different one than we’re used to. It sparks some debate, of course, as most things do. It sort of reminds me of the fight to require the use of seat belts in cars. Both masks and seat belts could be seen as minor inconveniences that ultimately work to keep us safe. When it comes to these transitions, what is your coping mechanism? Are you one to keep your head down and get through it? Are you someone who sets goals and tries to reach them? Whichever your preferred method of making it through this next season of COVID is, there is one thing at the root of this all.
We, as humans, need connection. While on the surface connecting with masks might seem difficult, there are a few different ways to stay connected with others!