I have so much to do today and not enough time.
Will I have enough money for _______?
Why was the person so rude to me?
Why aren't they wearing a mask?
That person just coughed? Do they have coronavirus?
Will I die if I get coronavirus?
If I get it, can I get it again?
What about the antibodies? I hear it doesn't mean much.
Is Vitamin D protective against Coronavirus?
My kids are going back to school. What if they get Coronavirus?
It is normal to have an internal dialogue with ourselves but rumination can be a state of constant, repetitive thoughts. These thoughts can lead one down a path to depression and anxiety if left unchecked.
In fact, depression and anxiety can be viewed as a continuum. Many who are anxious for a time, can then collapse into depression. Alternatively, someone who is depressed can pull themselves out of it only to then feel anxious.
The mind is complicated, we have learned a lot, but there is still a long way to go. It has been said the mind is like a monkey swinging from tree to tree. Some days, it feels like it has had an intravenous infusion of caffeine and it just will not slow down. Other days, it is as if you are in a dark room, and inserting a positive thought into the darkness is like lighting a candle that keeps getting blown out in the room.
A belief that many have found helpful is that we are not our thoughts. If our mind is like that monkey swinging from tree to tree, we do not have to swing. Just breathe into it, and watch the monkey swinging around. Breathe and I quote from Aristotle "No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness".
Do not worry. Do not fret. Everything will be alright. This too shall pass. We really all are in this pandemic together. Is there a bigger lesson here? What is life teaching me right now? Is there an opportunity in the chaos? There is a blank page in front of you, I invite you to share your humanity below.