Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Published Tuesday, June 02, 2020 with 4 comments

Managing Re-entry Anxiety In Youth Sports

Since March, when the pandemic and subsequent lockdown were announced, it’s been one curious ride. Everything changed, right from our daily routine to social life, everything. We started living a life that nobody ever imagined we ever would (other than in some movies that we up until now thought were based on fiction). Staying away from friends and family, inside the confines of our home, living our lives online trying hard to minimize physical contact with the world, all of this has taken us through an emotional ordeal whose impact we still haven’t been able to fully gauge. While people are still trying to sink in the lockdown and its repercussions, the world seems to be getting ready to open up again. 
As the world gets ready to open up, we still haven’t been able to figure out if that all good news. People are anxious. The re-entry into the world has a whole new level of anxiety, and getting started is going to be a huge challenge, be it for retail, entertainment or even the fitness and sports industry. 
There are some pressing concerns that need to be addressed and some important questions to be answered. But before we try and address it lets understand what exactly is re-entry anxiety.
When the pandemic spread and governments across the world realised how it would affect the entire population if not controlled, lockdown and social distancing were applied as the only measures that could control the spread of the virus. To be able to make people understand the gravity of the situation, people were told that they would be safe inside their house and being out would put their lives to danger. While all of this was true, it wasn’t easy convincing people of the same. People went through a whole lot of emotional and mental stress to be able to accept the reality. And now that people have accepted social distancing and have stated getting comfortable inside their safe bubbles, it’s a challenge asking them to come out of them. Some common concerns regarding re-entry are:
·         Is it going to be safe out there?
·         What if I get infected with the virus?
·         What if the virus spreads again due to increased exposure?
·         Will there be another lockdown?
Then there is the issue of lack of trust on the administration and the fear of uncertainty. Everybody’s had an opinion on the pandemic and the spread of it. many people have been influenced by social media feeds that have made people to believe that the authorities or governments were being highly discreet about the virus, some believe it’s a hoax created by the pharma lobby, and yet others think the authorities have been inefficient in controlling the spread. While this may or may not be true, the issue remains most people do not trust the authorities as far as Covid 19 is concerned.
Getting Ready For Re-entry
·         The first and foremost step is to acknowledge that the re-entry anxiety is real. Once you come to terms with your fear, you can work towards overcoming it.
·         Start with staying updated on the latest Covid 19 spread update in your vicinity, in your community. This will help you decide if it’s okay to go out yourself or send your child to play. Access the situation vis-a-vie the fact that playing is essential for your child’s mental and physical health, but that should not come at the risk of infection.
·         Follow government issued guidelines in your state, town and neighbourhood with regards to Covid 19 safety measures. A relaxation on lockdown may not essentially mean relaxation on social distancing, especially for kids.
·         Understand that if not now, things will re-open at some point. And it may not be 100 percent safe for a long time now. Perhaps it would be a good idea to make hygiene, face masks social distancing a part of our lives for good. The sooner we understand this, the better it would be for us.
·         Always be open to seeking help if you feel anxious or depressed about the situation. Pandemic phobia and re-entry anxiety are natural and many people across the world are facing it. It’s okay to ask for help.



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