Circle of Control

Circle of Control

February 03, 2022

Chances are you have been affected by a school or childcare closure, lack of staff at the workplace or have had to quarantine because of the rise in COVID-19 infections in the last month. The uncertainty can be exhausting, especially after two years of a pandemic. There are, however, things we can focus on to help find balance with feelings of reassurance and confidence.

We have learned so much about public health measures to help protect ourselves, our family, and our community from COVID-19 in the last two years. Even with a new variant spreading, we now have some level of control because we have more knowledge and tools then when the pandemic started. The important things we must consider and differentiate are those we can control, those we can only influence, and those we have no control over. If we focus our minds and energy on things we can control and influence, it may help lessen the stress and help motivate us along the way.

Let’s start with things we can control. The good news is that there is so much we can do now to keep ourselves and families safe. We know that vaccination not only lessens our chance of a COVID-19 infection but is incredibly affective at protecting us against hospitalization or death. Vaccinations are available for everybody 5 years old and older and can help create a barrier of protection around vulnerable members of our community. That is a lot of protection. We also know that we can increase our protection by wearing masks, quarantining and isolation, social distancing, meeting outside when possible, and following other health guidance.

There are some things we can’t control, but we can influence. We have opportunities all around us to help people be safe and support the community. If we know somebody concerned about getting vaccinated, we can listen and share our experience, resources, or even a ride to get it done. We can’t control the effects of the pandemic in the community, but we can help by being kind and patient to people around us, donating to a cause, or volunteering.

There are always things in life we cannot control. Others’ actions, school closures, and how the virus may change are all things we can prepare for but ultimately can’t control. It’s important to use our time and energy in areas of control and influence. If we focus on what we can’t control, it can lead to increased anxiety and feelings of helplessness.

It also helps to know that you are not alone in experiencing all of this. If you find you need support or just a listening ear to share your struggles with all of this, you can call or text Washington Listens at 833.681.0211. Another great source of support is the A Mindful State website where you can find resources, expert advice, and share experiences with others in our state.