Note: More to Life with Faith and Lois is designed to be heard, not read. We hope you’ll listen to the audio, which includes emotion and emphasis that won’t be on this page. Our transcripts are generated with speech recognition software and may contain errors. 

 

Lois 

Welcome to the podcast More to Life with Faith and Lois. 

 

Faith 

I’m Faith.

 

Lois 

And I’m Lois.

 

Faith 

Our podcast explores the things you face in life that inspire and daunt you.

 

Lois 

Good morning Faith.

 

Faith 

And good morning, Lois. Isn’t this great? I mean, the weather. I mean, I think we’ve moved from winter to summer.

 

Lois 

Oh my goodness, warm, warm, warm, and it’s gonna be even warmer today than it is if you’re in the Denver Metro area. And what a glorious weekend and I know that around the country, a number of places had beautiful times this weekend and some of you had pouring rain so but whatever you had, you got to see more people starting to gather not huge groups, but trying and starting to step out. I absolutely saw it Faith. What about you?

 

Faith 

Absolutely. We we just took a little drive and the roads were filled as like oh my goodness, everybody’s out. It was the most track of traffic I have seen in all this period of time that we’ve been in shutdown mode. But it was it was kind of really good is like there was activity, and there was life going on around us.

 

Lois 

Yeah, you can almost sense that people are starting to figure out how are they going to re enter life as they once knew it? Will that ever come back? What about the workforce? What about life outside our homes in somebody else’s home for that matter? Maybe worship services, Parks stores, oh my goodness, it’s step by step for most of us. And that’s what we want to talk about today because for the past few weeks, we’ve really been zeroing in on the coronas buyer the Coronavirus era that is and how it’s impacting you and and Faith as we’ve been sharing, it is definitely impacting us daily.

 

Faith 

Oh, without question, emotionally, physically, just mentally the lot of grief I was talking to some friends last night on And the grief that they’re feeling that they can’t hug their kids or their or their grandkids. And they’re missing out on first birthdays and, and there was a lot of grief. So, boy, this whole period of time has brought up just a variety and a barrage of feelings and thoughts. And yeah, it’s been a troubled time and also a very good time, there’s been a lot of positive things happening as well.

 

Lois  

That’s right, and we at More to Life with Faith and Lois. So trying to kind of highlight those kinds of things that are bubbling up and actually bubbling over in positive ways. And if you want to hear any of the other topics that we’ve been covering with COVID-19, please go to our website, www.moretolifewithfaithandlois.com or on your favorite podcast platform, and we are sure by now you have hopefully subscribed to us on that platform. We also have a weekly newsletter that’s comes from our website. So please, if you would like to be part of that and know what we’re doing. Sign up. For that, because every week in addition to our podcasts, we have been creating videos in these COVID-19 times. And by the way, as you might imagine, if you go to YouTube, look us up more life with faith in Lois, we have a complete series of videos that are on YouTube as well. So today we are focusing on how to prepare for a new normal beyond COVID-19 because this is week nine, and most of us who’ve been either stay at home or safer at home, or beginning to step out, even if it’s just gingerly or on a drive or noticing other people so we thought we would talk about how you’re preparing and faith before we can dive into any of the preparations we have to acknowledge there’s a lot of anxiety that come on these kinds of preparations.

 

Faith 

Oh my gosh, yes, anxiety level is very high. What to do what not to do, should I shouldn’t die. What if? Because people are still suffering, and people are still getting sick. So Of course, that’s going to be a little bit of a red flag to those who are going, Is it safe? Should I do this? And I just want to acknowledge to everyone who is questioning, good for you question because you need to do what is best for you. And you need to begin to make decisions as to what you feel comfortable with, which is exactly what we’re going to get into today.

 

Lois 

You know, and I’ve really noticed that I wash my hands more than ever before. And I actually feel like I’m making sure that any produce that comes into my house or any packaging, I’ve gone through that when I didn’t before. So I’m starting to find elements that I can control because you know what happens when we feel out of control, we forget that there are some things that we actually do have control over. And so I’ve become more encouraged and feel just that little bit safer. And I’m bringing down some of my anxiety by looking at what I can control and that also includes how I engage with people. Faith you were just mentioning that, you know, what do you feel comfortable with someone else? And that’s a very much a personal basis and keeping ourselves healthy. And if you do, go into a store with a mask on and you see someone who is not operating under the same rules that you feel would be most prudent, I suggest that you turn around and walk away and just go to someplace where you do feel safe, because it’s so hard to try to dictate and tell everybody else what to do. So I’ve really started more than ever before to say, wow, that person wants to live like that. Okay, I’m going to live on this side of the store and get what I need to do. And therefore, I bring my level of anxiety down.

 

Faith 

Yes, yeah, that is so good. And that’s finding your safety net. This is where I feel safe. And that’s taking responsibility for yourself in the best way to do it. And that that is also means to be aware of what causes anxiety within you, if you’re just going about your business and and not Thinking about where do I feel safe? Where do I not feel safe? And then you step out, you can get overwhelmed pretty quickly. Oh my goodness, where am I? And Is this okay? And what what might happen? no plan ahead, plan ahead so you can bring down your anxiety. This is how I’m going to go into the store and I have my own ritual. Before I go into a store, I have my wipes, I wipe my hands before I go in. I am prepared to have the mask I go in. I I am so intent on looking at each step. And then when I come out of the store, again, I wipe I don’t touch the door handles, I do all the different things that I have a system and I feel safer with that system right now. And that’s one way you can take care of yourself.

 

Lois 

Yes, I am so appreciative of that because this is the new routines faith that we’ve been talking about for the past nine weeks and How many of us have had to set them up? And a lot of the routines now we’re going to take with us as we have to return in some cases to a workplace, or to a place of business, or to how we engage with people. And so we’re going to bring this along in this podcast as we talk about preparing for a new normal beyond COVID-19. And one of the things you can do at this moment, today, as you’re listening, begin to assess, are you ready to return to work, you may have a workplace that’s starting to send you email saying, you know what, we’re going to open on such and such a date, we’re going to have a rolling open at 50%. We’re going to be sitting apart. I know that that is how it’s going to work, at least for my husband’s company faith because I have the luxury now I can see of working from home, so I don’t have to make some of these decisions. But my husband does. And I’ve watched as their business has started to send out emails, and lo and behold, over the weekend, people started actually emailing saying, I want to come back in the office when May I come in because I don’t have the bandwidth that I need to do some of the software engineering that that goes on. And when can I actually come? And when will it be safe? So the questions are coming out there. And these individuals are starting to assess, Is it safe? Is it time, and most businesses have protocols, as you come in, you know, 50%, there’s still going to be social distancing. Masks may be required in certain businesses. I mean, they’re going to be different things that are going to happen, maybe your temperature is going to be taken when you come in, you get to make that choice. Start looking at that now. And as Faith mentioned before, start planning and think ahead, so that you know, you have some modicum of control in all of us.

 

Faith 

Absolutely. Yeah, we just got the notice from the state about if we were going to let clients come back into the office and the protocol for that. And that was really good when they stated that not only do the clients need to feel safe, and that’s their choice, but The therapists also need to feel safe. And so it’s a two way street of, of where we’re both assessing, both checking how can we best do this. We’re fortunate enough that we can do some things outdoors and on nicer weather. I’m looking at the possibility of having people and meeting people outdoors, where we can have a safe distance, but be able to see more face to face. So there’s options. There’s ways to do it, until you really feel like there’s a clear passage to I can go back to more of how it used to be.

 

Lois 

You know, the next thing is to assess if you’re ready to go into a business. I got an email a couple of weeks ago from my hair salon, and they laid out an entire plan of how they were going to allow any of us who wanted to have our hair done to come into a salon and what would be required. Now the first thing they just put it right out there and so if you didn’t like this, you just had to know this. They’re gonna take Could temperature and if your temperature is high, it doesn’t matter whatever reason, even if you’re nervous, they have a threshold. You must be masked when you come. You can’t just walk into the salon, you arrive at the salon and you have to text your stylist who then says, Yes, I’m here. Yes, you’re there, you may come in, can’t bring your kids along any time anymore. Can’t have somebody else with you. And I went ahead and took those requirements. And I went in and got my hair done last week. And so I made a decision that I felt safe enough, but just to your point, faith as well. There are some stylists who did not feel comfortable coming in and didn’t appreciate even being in that kind of proximity. Now there were only four of us in the entire place. So it was very, we were very spread out and it was I felt I felt very safe and my stylist felt safe as well, but I could understand how some people wouldn’t. So again, it’s all about looking ahead. When you get those emails. When you get these recommendations that you may feel free to start back. Are you ready? Am I prepared to have these things happen to me for me to go in that store? I’ve understood from some people who are going to open elements of their clothing store, people are going to literally have to sign put their emails. So if anything comes up, then they can be that’s their own form of contact tracing of finding out who was in their store who tried on clothing, and are you willing to give that kind of information? Maybe you are. And great, you can go, maybe you’re not. So do your best to not be surprised, because when you’re not surprised, then you know what’s coming. When you go in and hear that face. Some people get really bent out of shape. And so just be prepared that it will not be looking the same, but you might be able to like me get my hair done, which is nice.

 

Faith 

Exactly. And that’s really good advice. Last because the reality is if you just because things start to open up doesn’t I mean, it’s opening up into how it was, it’s opening up to how it is different. And you need to be prepared emotionally, psychologically, mentally, and physically to go, I’m stepping into something that I have not stepped into before. So when you go to the salon, it’s different. It’s not like it was the last time you got your hair done. And if you do go into one of the retail stores, and you try on clothes and you decide not to wear it, you need to think about that because they have to put that into a sterile sterilizing situation, or let it air out for 17 hours. So anything you don’t buy, it has to be taken care of. And so I think it’s being more respectful and saying, What do I really want to try on or what shoes do I want to try on because if I don’t take them, then it’s adding a greater burden to the store itself. So I think we have to think differently, it’s not just going to, hey, I want to try on 10 pairs of shoes be more selective perhaps, because 10 pairs of shoes are gonna have to be sterilized for 17 hours. So I think we have to think differently, move differently, and be ready for being considerate not only for ourselves, but for those that are around us.

 

Lois 

And this is all part of this conversation of preparing for a new normal, beyond COVID-19. Because as faith and I are talking about it is looking different already. And right now is also the time if you are someone who has to go back into a workplace, start negotiating and having a conversation with your manager or your supervisor, or if you’re the supervisor, have a manager, have a conversation with those with whom you work, because you’re going to find that some people are ready. They want to come in maybe they won’t be doing 100% work there just because we can’t we Know that these buildings cannot staff 100% of their workforce, but maybe you want to come in two days a week, or four days a week, or one day a week, or you don’t want to come in at all. These are conversations to have. And you know what, right now, we have all the flexibility in the world to have these conversations. And managers and supervisors and employees all know that they all get a voice. You know, it wasn’t long ago, where if you said, You know, I don’t really want to come into work, and I don’t want to do this, they would just say, well, that’s okay, you’re coming in on these days, that the new normal means that you might be able to call the shots on some of this, especially if there is an accountability platform that is built in. And if you’re a manager, you may have to learn some really interesting techniques of how to manage almost all of your team online, if that’s what they choose to do. But if you start now, week nine things are not all open yet. And you start to have these conversations. Wow. In a few weeks, as the doors do open, I think you’re gonna find much more cohesion with each other with one another feeling like I was heard my voice was heard, and that you heard somebody who wants it to be heard.

 

Faith 

Mm hmm. Yeah. And it’s communication. You said that brilliantly. It’s all about communication. And I think it’s going to open up all kinds of relational issues that are going to be so much better, because it’s going to be dependent on everyone communicating back and forth, what they need, how they need to work, what works for them, and everybody moving more into a cooperative style. And that oftentimes hasn’t been the case in the workplace. It’s been kind of all about me, in the workplace, or what I need now and it’s up to you to get it to me, and that’s changed. It’s changed over these nine weeks. Let’s keep it going in with good communication about what you still need.

 

Lois 

If you’re also someone who participated in a house of worship, you know, I drove this weekend along the roads. And I saw a number of houses of worship that were open on a certain level they had, I did not, I don’t happen to attend one of them. But they they notified outside, but they were open. They’re kind of on a rolling scale, you know where you you came in at different times. So I’m not sure how they were doing some of the worship services or the masses, but people were sitting apart from each other. You saw lines outside as if you were at a grocery store. So it was a really different way of thinking about collectively gathering together for worship. And each house of worship gets to decide that based on what we are talking about here, faith communication, what is going to work best for the people in this congregation, and how they need and want and desire to collectively worship and be together again. Mm hmm.

 

Faith 

So good. And keep in mind as as you’re moving through this This isn’t permanent. Yes, I mean, I keep going back to, we have brilliant, so many brilliant scientists all around the world working 24 seven, to find the answer in the solution, so that we can actually move back more into a life that we are familiar with. And so keep that hope alive, that what we’re doing is stepping into what is now, but it’s not going to always be this way.

 

Lois 

And then the last area of the new normal beyond COVID-19 has to do with getting out into nature into parks and into open space. And some of you have been able to do this very easily and regularly based on where you live. I will tell you for one, my husband and my son and I have made a point of getting to places so that we can appreciate the outdoors on the weekends, one day a weekend. We really tried to do that. But now that we’re seeing more people join back in and be friends Part of this, it’s going to look different. And I think that is the biggest thing we’re noticing is they, there was such a, like a level of respect faith this weekend when we saw people they collected in small groups, but they did not meet with more than 10 people around and we actually we would see groups and we would count 1-2-3 there’s only six. Okay, there are two kinds of things I never once noticed before. Doing a quick count, I eat her out ladder with my head. And so I’m I’m watching that, and I’m so thrilled because I think as the weather warms, and as we can see things changing around us, we want to be out in it. So let’s keep that level of respect going so that there is no fear for those next to you and around you that feel that you might intrude on their space.

 

Faith 

Mm hmm. Yeah, I noticed that too. I mean, I live in a wonderful place where I can sit out on the deck and feel like I’m in the four Justin and I can walk around our property. But also I like to get out where there’s some other paths and stuff that I can walk on. But as I was watching them, just yesterday, I was again, so aware of how careful they were to keep a distance. And if someone was going to be on the path and pass, they pass quickly, and kept moving. So there’s, there’s a respect out there. And I think that’s part of the foundation of, of feeling safe. And feeling like we’re not just doing this ourselves. There are people that are in it with us, that want the same for themselves as well as for us. And so it’s a mutual agreement of, I’m in this with everyone that’s out here. And that’s that is exactly what’s going to make it work. If we can just do this. We can begin to enter into life and have peace of mind. Isn’t that what we all want?

 

Lois 

And my hats are off to all of you who are cyclists because I have to tell you, I was on bike trails this weekend face. And there are signs everywhere about keeping six feet apart. But you know what, on a bike, that’s pretty easy. So I just want to say that most bikes are so busy right now only because people are, you know, fixing up and getting everything ready to go. And there are fewer and fewer bikes, because they’re recognizing those of us who are on bikes that we really can keep that distance. Be outside and enjoy this beautiful nature that we have all around us. But whatever you do, make sure it’s something that works for you and for your family. And don’t rush into anything because someone says it’s open, therefore you have to be there, or the reverse. I can never go back out because I have too many fears. Let’s find ways to work through that anxiety and get get to a place in ourselves where we feel safe enough to get out and meet the world. And by the way, if you do need to have a chat with anybody and you are finding yourself With that anxiety level climbing and not able to getting back down, please know that faith and I are available if you want to reach out to us on our website. Faith is a psychotherapist and I’m a life coach and we would love to have a conversation with you about where you are and to remind you, there is more more more to life.

 

Faith 

The new normal is stepping into the unknown, but it is also stepping into a new adventure. Being prepared emotionally, can make for a smoother entry.

 

Lois 

Finding a way to reengage will be on your time, determine what you can control and step into what works for you. Because you know what? You’ve got this.

 

Faith 

You are not alone. And we are here if you need to talk

 

Lois 

And join us next week when we explore another facet of how we are managing life in these challenging times.

 

Faith 

Sign up for our weekly newsletter on our website. And subscribe to our podcast wherever you listen.

 

Lois 

No matter what you face in relationships, your body, spirituality or your craft.

 

Faith 

We are here to assure you, there is always more to life.

 

Lois 

We’ll be back next week.