NYC Psychotherapist Blog

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Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Reflecting on What's Important in Your Life During a Crisis

During the current COVID-19 pandemic, when most people have been staying home in isolation, many people have been thinking about their lives and reflecting on what's most important to them (see my articles: A Search For Inner MeaningWhat is Happiness and Where Do You Find It? and Redefining Happiness and Success For Yourself).

Reflecting on What's Important in Your Life During a Crisis
The unprecedented nature of the coronavirus pandemic has people reconsidering their lives and their priorities, including:
  • Family: 
    • People who are fortunate to have good (or good enough) relationships in their family are considering some of these relationships in a new light (see my article: A Happy Family Doesn't Mean a "Perfect" Family).
    • Before COVID-19, when people were busy commuting to work and working long hours, family often took a backseat to work.  
    • With the potential for getting a life-threatening illness, like the coronavirus, many people are thinking of family relationships as being the #1 priority.  
    • There are even some family members who have been out of contact for a long time who are reconnecting and making amends.
  • Spirituality and Values: 
    • Coping with a crisis often makes people re-evaluate their religion or their spiritual beliefs (see my article: Are You Contemplating Your Faith of Origin in a New Light?).
    • Spirituality isn't necessarily a formal religion.  It can be a set of spiritual beliefs and values that are important to the individual.
    • Some people, who might not have considered themselves to be spiritual before, are making religion or spirituality more of a priority to help them get through this difficult time (see my article: A Happy Life vs a Meaningful Life).
  • Intimate Relationships:
    • The current crisis has affected couples who were on the brink of breaking up before the pandemic. 
    • For some couples, the crisis affirmed their decision that they want to be happier in their lives and they have decided that they can't be happy with their current partner.
    • Other couples are finding it difficult to spend so much time together due to the need to stay home (see my article: Tips on Getting Along as a Couple During the COVID-19 Crisis).
    • For other couples, who were having problems, put aside their differences now to focus on getting through the crisis, especially if they have children.
    • Many couples have experienced a renewed sense of commitment to their relationship in light of the current emergency.  
    • For other couples, the lack of commitment of one partner has caused the other partner, who wants a commitment, to reconsider the relationship (see my article: Are You Dating Someone Who Has a Problem Making a Commitment to Being in a Relationship?).
    • Some individuals, who aren't in a relationship, feel lonely during this time of isolation and have made a firmer commitment to meeting someone new.
    • Other individuals have reaffirmed their commitment to themselves to remain single because this is their preference.
  • Health:
    • Fortunately, for most people, the virus has been mild.  
    • For people who are older or who have underlying conditions that make them more vulnerable to developing a more serious reaction to the virus, health considerations have been uppermost in their mind (see my article: How Serious Medical Problems Can Affect How You Feel About Yourself).
    • The rate of contagion of the virus is forcing most people to consider their health habits and ways to improve on them.
  • Work-Life Balance
    • Everyone isn't fortunate enough to re-evaluate their work-life balance.  Some people have no choice but to work three or four jobs just to survive.
    • For people who are fortunate to consider their work-life balance, some people are considering how much longer they want to work and whether they would rather spend their time doing other things, like spending more time with family, traveling, spending time on a hobby or living a simpler, quieter life (see my article: Balancing Your Career and Your Personal Life).
    • Other people are considering whether they want to remain in their current career or whether they want to transition to something else eventually.  There is a recognition that life is short and putting off what they really want might not be wise (see my article: Navigating Life's Transitions).
    • Some people are realizing that they prefer to live life at a slower pace, which might mean making changes in their work, retiring or eventually or moving to a place where the pace is slower (see my article: Midlife Transitions and Preparing Emotionally For Making Major Changes in Your Life).
  • Money
    • People who have been laid off, furloughed or had their work hours reduced are concerned about money.
    • Other people are struggling emotionally because they have been terminated from their jobs, which means a loss of income and a loss of identity (see my article: When Job Loss Means Loss of Identity).
    • Many people are re-evaluating their priorities, what they spend money on and how much to save and how much to spend.
    • Many people are considering the amount of debt that they carry and they're hoping to be able to develop a plan to get out of debt.
    • Many couples have been arguing about money during this time (see my article: Are You and Your Spouse Arguing About Money?).
What Have You Been Reflecting on During This Crisis?
The areas that I've included above is by no means exhaustive.

What have you been thinking about? Is the current crisis causing you to re-evaluate your life?

Getting Help in Therapy
Major crises are often difficult to get through.  But they can also be an opportunity for change (see my article: How a Crisis Can Bring About Positive Changes in Your Life).

If you're thinking about how you would like to change your life, you could benefit from working with an experienced psychotherapist who can help you to consider what's most important to you and help you develop strategies for changing your life.

Many psychotherapists, including me, are doing online therapy, which is also known as teletherapy or telehealth (see my article: The Advantages of Online Therapy When Your Therapist Isn't Available in Person).

Rather than struggling on your own, you could work with a licensed therapist who has experience helping people to make changes in their life.

About Me
I am a licensed NYC psychotherapist, hypnotherapist, EMDR, AEDP, EFT and Somatic Experiencing therapist (see my article: The Therapeutic Benefits of Integrative Psychotherapy).

I work with individual adults and couples.

I am providing online therapy during the COVID-19 crisis.

To find out more about me, visit my website: Josephine Ferraro, LCSW - NYC Psychotherapist.

To set up a consultation, call me at (917) 742-2624 or email me.