Today the government have said that you wont HAVE to wear a mask after the 19th, yet in a tv poll 69% of people said they would still feel safer wearing one.
How do you feel about it? Are you happy at the prospect of de-masking, or does the thought of going out ‘uncovered’ scare you? In todays post I want to talk about how to handle a fear of taking your mask off.
When he idea of wearing a mask first came out last year, many of us were horrified. However, as the pandemic rolled on and we almost got used to it, the thought of taking it off seemed unthinkable, and many of us have begun to feel safe in them. The idea of going out maskless may leave you feeling unprotected so here are my top three tips on how to handle things if society is told it can go maskless.
1. If Want To Keep Wearing It, Don’t Take Your Mask Off.
The first thing that I would say is that if you want to keep wearing it, then don’t take your mask off. It is not compulsory that you do so, and it’s fine if you want to keep wearing it. This is about feeling safe and doing things at a time when you feel ready. If now is too soon for you, then don’t take your mask off.
2. If You Want To Take Your Mask Off But Are Fearful, Try This…
Imagine that you are encased in a protective bubble, Visualise the bubble forming itself around you and know that when you are inside this bubble you are safe and protected. Of course I am not literally saying that you will be safe from Covid, this is about handling anxiety and fear. Stay inside this bubble, and know that this bubble will keep you two metres apart from people. If you want to take your mask off but for the first time are fearful, this will mentally remind you that you are in control of how close you get to other people.
3. Know That You Have To Create The New Habit.
It takes around 28 days to make or break a habit. We have been wearing masks for a year and a half now. Therefore we are bound to feel nervous if the rule suddenly changes. It will take time to get used to going out maskless, in the same way that it took time to adapt to wearing one. We have formed a habit, and we now have to form a new one. So, know that it is normal for your brain to find it weird or difficult to just get used to taking the mask off. Give it time, and let yourself slowly get used to it.
Things are bound to feel strange, as we have been through a global trauma. It took a while for us to get used to things and it will take time to go back to normal – and what does normal even mean now? The way that we are living at the moment has become our new normal. Humans are creatures of habit and we have always found adapting to change difficult.
Aside from anything else, there is this sense of not knowing what’s around the corner, the situation and the rules are so changeable, so it’s perhaps time to accept that we may have to get used to feeling uncertain.
I’d like to know how YOU feel about the thought of taking the mask off – will you do it? Do you feel that the time is right to do it? Are we out of the woods yet, or will we ever be?
Have a great day and let me know your thoughts in the comments,
Christopher Paul Jones.