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Experts say COVID-19 fatigue is real

Posted at 11:16 AM, Aug 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-11 14:16:50-04

You may have heard the phrase lately, 'the pandemic isn't over just because you're over it,' and that is because a lot of people across the country are feeling COVID fatigue.

We've been doing the work, wearing masks, social-distancing and upending nearly every aspect of our lives, but with the end of the pandemic still unclear, many are left feeling defeated and burned out," Best-selling author and clinical psychologist Dr. Wayne Pernell said. "We are running this marathon and someone goes, 'we moved the finish line, keep going.'"

In fact, he said whatever you are feeling is normal, but it is definitely understandable to feel, for lack of a better term, completely over it. So, how do we cope with this constant change and uncertainty? For starters, Dr. Pernell said do something as simple as reminding yourself of the things you have grown to like about this new normal.

"We really need to take time for ourselves and to recognize that there are some things we like about the new schedule. My commute has been reduced to about 30 seconds," Pernell chuckled.

Other examples of this are getting to spend time with your kids or having lunch every day with a significant other, things that would not have been possible without current restrictions.

Dr. Pernell also said to give yourself a break and recognize when others need it too.

"We all get to this place of a little irritation or a little 'I've had enough.' Allow that, recognize it, acknowledge it and don't try and make it better," he said.

Keeping with the trend of thinking positively, Dr. Pernell said he sees this as a time to really hone the skills we are gaining. He said given what we are all going through, we will be more resilient and courageous, things he said will serve us well going forward.

"Every day we are filled with uncertainty," Dr. Pernell said. "Every day we wake up and we don't know what today might hold... if there are new impositions on us or new rules."

Of course, number one, Dr. Pernell said to remember that this will end. Eventually.

"Recognize also that just like a foggy day or a rainy day, just realize it's not foggy or rainy all the time, forever and ever and ever. That this does burn out, that there is sunshine," Dr. Pernell said.

This story was originally reported by Claire Crouch at WLEX.