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I would be surprised if you haven't noticed an increase in often difficult to explain emotions since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Have you noticed yourself and others:

  • acting as if nothing has changed
  • being more anxious or agitated
  • becoming angry more easily,
  • crying more often,
  • isolating from others,
  • driving faster,
  • behaving more generously, or
  • hoarding?

This shift toward more emotional behavior may be grief, a natural response to overwhelming events and great loss.

Grief generally includes a set of fluctuating stages, but they don't typically appear in a neat sequence. Grief can be messy.

There are several ways of framing the stages of grief. One seven stage model includes:

  • shock and denial;
  • pain and guilt;
  • anger and bargaining;
  • depression, reflection, and loneliness;
  • an upward turn with less intense uncomfortable symptoms;
  • reconstruction and working through solutions; and
  • acceptance and hope.

What is especially unusual is that we've seen this wave of grief overtake people all around the globe as the coronavirus has spread. This grief is affecting people of all ages in all nations. We're not alone.

I hope that you, too, will find this article by Scott Berinato in the Harvard Business Review helpful and even encouraging.
https://hbr.org/2020/03/that-discomfort-youre-feeling-is-grief?fbclid=IwAR1_XlhY8iPrf2QJPvmT9R1D4pBlVbzFJd90RMGgWYU8W-WJaAtLyKxyjaA

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Therapeutic farms use work in a natural environment to improve mental health.

Did you know that the State of Maryland was actually an innovator in this approach over a century ago?

In the 1970s I spent a summer working with older men at the Springfield State Hospital in Sykesville, MD. Long before Springfield was a mental institution, it was an estate and working farm, originally developed as the dowry for the daughter of a wealthy Baltimorean, William Patterson. His daughter was intended to marry Napoleon Bonaparte's brother, Jerome Bonaparte, although the marriage was later blocked by Napoleon.

In 1896, the State of Maryland transformed Springfield into a mental institution. Springfield was intended as an advance, using a more humane medical model for care instead of the prior practice of housing the "insane" in almshouses and poor farms ...continue reading

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