COVID-19 took us all by surprise.

And this frustrating surprise has invaded our whole life, sometimes for the worse.

Of course, we all want to avoid getting this disease or passing it on to our family and friends. Perhaps we have already been affected by this virus, and we still have symptoms long afterwards. Maybe we got vaccinated and we feel more secure since then.

We still don't know much about this virus, but it is just one of many problems.

Other issues are less obvious.

We all know someone who is stressed, anxious, depressed even suffering from panic disorder, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder or self-harming thoughts, because they feel helpless, or because they have lost their job and are worried about their money, family and friends, or because they are grieving the loss of a loved one. Maybe that ‘someone’ is ourselves. Know that this is normal. This situation has changed our whole life, we don't know how it will evolve and when we will finally get back to our normal routine or if it is even possible. This feeling of the unexpected is very present in these times.

Also in the area of health, substance use has increased a lot. This has led many people to suffer from addictions. This long list shows how important mental health awareness is for self-care and prevention.

At work, everything is also new. Most people have had to work remotely, which was not usual before the pandemic. It was challenging for everyone to adapt to working remotely for many reasons: adjusting technologies, difficulty in disconnecting from work, communication problems in the company, working while having pets or children at home or also having a structured and healthy life...

The pandemic has also affected our social life. Some people feel lonely, even if they are not alone. Others live far away from family or friends and even if it is not the case, social distancing rules have asked us to avoid too much contact with others. If we can go back to work, we have to wear a mask which directly puts a distance with others. We learn to communicate more with our eyes. We are isolated from the rest of the world. Domestic violence has also increased. While remote working, some parents had to stay at home with their children who were expressing anger or boredom at the unsettling changes in their lives. This was tiring, difficult to manage, and the atmosphere in the house was not necessarily pleasant. We also lose some of our ties to the community or social support that would normally help us to be resilient.

Now we can go out again. However, many people are still tired, anxious about the instability of life, or anxious about going out and being with people. Others are still recovering from COVID-19 and this is long. Some of those hospitalised have been in a state of post-traumatic stress, and that is hard and shocking. They don't want to go through that again.

You are not alone.

We know that reading this document can be a trigger, as this is a very sensitive topic. If you can relate to any of these situations, you are not alone. We are all affected, even on a global scale. If you feel stuck and see no improvement in your life, consider seeing a psychotherapist or other specialists who can help you deal with this destabilising context.

If you have no idea where to begin, feel free to contact Upmote.

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