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Student Blog: Breaking Through The Pandemic Wall

Here’s a little empowerment exercise meets blog post for you today. I’m not sure who needs to hear this, maybe it’s me! But whoever needs a little boost- read on.

Hello Broadway lovers, theatre creators and performers around the world! Happy March! This month marks one year since the world went absolutely crazy, and I thought I'd dedicate some blog space to addressing "the pandemic wall." I heard this phrase recently, and it really sums up how I've been feeling lately. The pandemic wall refers to the fact our bodies, minds and hearts have worked overtime to keep us safe this past year...and now we may feel burnt out and exhausted.

Each week feels pretty much the same, and it's so hard to drum up the motivation to push forward with normal levels of excitement and hope. Stuck in quarantine for an entire year, I've felt this metaphorical wall in excess lately. Even writing this wonderful blog can feel difficult amidst keeping up with schoolwork and living through a pandemic. So, if you're feeling the exact same way, remember that you're not alone, by any means. Anything you feel right now is completely and 100% valid. Here's a little empowerment exercise meets blog post for you today. I'm not sure who needs to hear this, maybe it's me! But whoever needs a little boost- read on.

First of all, during this "pandemic wall" talk, I learned to talk myself like I would a friend. Instead of being hard on yourself for how you've been feeling, take a moment to encourage yourself like you'd encourage your BFF. If he/she/they were feeling exhausted and unmotivated right would you talk to them? Next, take a moment to show compassion for yourself in whatever headspace and energy you're in.

Below are some sentence starters I used for helping myself through my pandemic wall this morning and wanted to pass them on to you (credit to the Shine app!) in case it could help anyone today.

  • Thank you for embracing uncertainty when ________

  • I'm proud of how you adapted when ______

  • I took care of myself when ________

Then, repeat to yourself: you deserve to rest. You are doing the very best you can. This time is beyond difficult, and I am so proud of you for being here today. If you are feeling uninspired, exhausted, worried, anxious, that's okay. If this time is not your most creative or expansive, that's okay. If all you do is make it through the day, that's okay. You are loved, special and valid. Following the advice in this entire article is so much easier said than done. Trust me, I know. I haven't been taking my own advice either!! But hopefully, we can come together in a place of recognition and compassion for ourselves, and just take some time to breathe. I'm wrapping up this article with some of my favorite, quick self-care moments. I pass them on to you, and hope you all have a compassionate, loving, and peaceful March. You have the strength to continue and I'm sending all my virtual love to you!

Leah's 5- Minute Self-Care List:

  • Listen to your favorite musical soundtrack (just one song!)

  • Read just a chapter of a book

  • Five-minute yoga video (they're out there! And they're easier than you think)

  • Gratitude journaling (nothing gets me back in the moment then writing what I'm grateful for)

  • Watch bloopers of your favorite sitcom. It helps soo much more than you think.

  • Write. Just write a little bit. (it actually helps)

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From This Author - Student Blogger: Leah Packer