Ask The Therapist: My friends feel overwhelmed financially post-Covid-19
You need to realise that difficulties caused by Covid-19 will not be with us forever, and that you can look forward to achieving a new normal.
As we are undergoing through these trying times, there are a lot of people affected by the pandemic. Many of us are feeling the stress relating to financial issues arising out of this situation, and some are unable to cope up with it. There are, of course, various helplines to address this issue; but are there other ways in which we can help people overcome this? - Saifuddin Khomosi
To help people like yourself overcome challenges and the negative consequences the pandemic has had on their lives is both an important and difficult question to answer. As caring individuals, we need to offer emotional support to our friends and colleagues who are struggling with both the emotional and financial impact of Covid-19. It is important to connect with someone who can listen empathetically. This helps lessen the emotional burden and enables us to cope better. This connection can be achieved with either a trusted friend or relative or trained professional.
Do not lose sight of your self-worth during these difficult times. Your skills, experience, professional network, personal resources, family and friends can all play an important role in helping you through this difficult time.
There are also wonderful opportunities to volunteer and help people who are in similar circumstances. For example, Dubai has a network of food pantries that welcome volunteers. We can also take time to sort out our wardrobes and donate clothing for those in need. Trustworthy charities also give us an opportunity to contribute to helping people with financial struggles. This will help you recognise that you are not alone, and will reward you with feeling positive about helping others. Also, you need to realise that difficulties caused by Covid-19 will not be with us forever, and that you can look forward to achieving a new normal. Lastly, good self-care is essential during stressful times and helps us cope with adversity. The basics of self-care include adequate sleep, nutritious meals, exercise and, most importantly, social contact.
Dr Schonder is an integrated psychotherapist