Perseverance in the face of challenge

For many of us, 2020 has been one of, if not the most challenging years of our lives.  Covid-19 is putting tremendous pressure on us all, especially on parents with children at home.  More and more parents are reporting high levels of stress, anxiety, and feelings of being on edge since the pandemic started and this distress has a ripple effect on children, families, and relationships.   Being proactive and taking action is critical during times like these to sustain our health and well-being.

Here are just a few things we can do to ensure that we stay well:

  1. Choose a daily highlight: When you look back on your day, what activity or accomplishment or moment do you want to savor? That is your Highlight. Read more about highlights here.
  2. Be physically active:  Just a quick ten minutes of physical activity does wonders for our energy, creativity, and self-confidence.  Find your “right why” to excise and make it lifetime habit and something that you look forward to instead of just another chore on your already too full to do list.
  3. Reach out and connect: Social connection is a buffer against stress and enhances our resilience and well-being.  Pick up the phone and call a friend, send a text to a loved one or fire up a zoom meeting and watch a favorite show with a friend.  Check out this TED talk by radio host Celeste Headlee about how to have better, more meaningful conversations and enjoy a few laughs in the process.  
  4. Connect with a behavioral health professional:  TalkSpace, iPrevail and Happify are three tools available to our Cigna members to enhance your mental and emotional well-being.  Check them out on

In addition, the GMHEC colleges have many family friendly policies that may be available to you.  To learn more about these policies, refer to your school’s employee handbook or talk to your supervisor.   

This is a difficult time, but we have persevered through hard things before and we will get this as well.  We have got to focus on our the good, to move and take care of our bodies and minds and connect with others.  We have got to be willing to reach out, to ask for help and to offer help to those around us.  Together we can preserve through this storm and come out stronger and more resilient.