Powder River Examiner -

Strategies for Tough Times


April 23, 2020

Courtesy PR Extension Office

These are unprecedented and difficult times and the people of Powder River County have stepped up to protect their friends and family by social distancing. It has been incredibly difficult and challenging for all people, but particularly for those who can't work, those who are juggling teaching their school-aged children or those isolated from friends and family. Though the president, the governor and the public health department ensure us that we will be implementing new measures or phases to guide us back to work and a normal life, it may be a new normal and it may take time.

Kristi Mobley, School Psychologist, shared tools or strategies for managing these tough, unsettling times. The tools were given to her by a fellow school psychologist, Elizabeth Deschner, from the Belgrade schools. Deschner's most important message was to give ourselves some grace. We must understand that each of us are dealing with our own challenges, and none of us are handling this period in our lives perfectly, and we shouldn't try to. Be kind to yourself. It's okay if your family eats cereal for supper; the important thing is that they ate.

Another strategy Deschner recommended was to remember to laugh often. She encouraged families and individuals to watch a funny movie or tell a few "dad" jokes. Laughter and smiles counter fear and negativity and are great tools for feeling better. Mobley added that encouraging people to laugh and smile often are things that can make such a big impact for ourselves and others.

Self-care is also extremely important during these unsettling times.

Here is a blank copy for you to fill out.

Take frequent breaks, get plenty of sleep and take care of your emotional needs. Whether you call a friend or a mental health provider, connect with other people. There are many online and virtual meetings from church services to calling or texting friends and family that allow us to connect and develop our emotional well-being.

Mobley also shared a graphic to help us create a self-care plan developed by Ignacio Pacheco and Social Work Tech at http://socialworktech.com/2011/05/25/making-a-self-care-plan/.

Check out the MSU Extension behavioral health resource page at http://www.msuextension/powerriver.org for a list of resources or contact your healthcare provider for additional help and support. Stay SAFE, Powder River County!


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