Words of Wisdom: Advice from Y Members on Getting Through Tough Times

Last updated: May 11, 2020, at 10:25 a.m. PT

Originally published: May 11, 2020, at 9:44 a.m. PT


As we've written before, anxiety, stress, and strong emotion are amplified during a crisis, especially one as widespread as the coronavirus outbreak. One way that we are coping at the Y is by staying connected to one another and asking for help when we need it. And who better to help us with advice than our older adult members? Last week, we sent them an email asking for advice to carry us through these difficult times. Here's a look at what our wise friends had to say.

On keeping busy

Our older adults gave us so many ideas for ways to spend the time! If you're bored of puzzles or online shopping, try out some of these ideas.

Here are their answers to the questions, What do you do to keep busy? What are some fun or meaningful ways you've discovered to spend your time?

Working on model airplanes helps pass the time, going for walks, doing video work outs, journaling and reading.

Spending time outside, gardening, calling friends, cooking new recipes that I've always wanted to try and talking to my daughter.

Watching Netflix and trying not to get myself sick or get anyone else sick.

Creating. I love to sew. I do various sewing “art projects” to be creative. It allows me to sit quietly and time passes. And, I feel like I am accomplishing something.

On getting through hard times

It is an understatement to say that it's not easy to get through difficult times. This is especially true when you're doing it alone, or without your normal network of support. Try some of these suggestions from our older adult members for help.

Here are their answers to the question, What advice do you have about getting through hard times?

Keep busy - I do a lot of walking, 2 times a day. I live in a 55 and older community, so I can wave at my neighbors and say hello from a safe distance.

There are a lot of great comedies on TV...the sillier the better. Just get a good laugh.

Just keep thinking that you need to take care of yourself and that this will pass eventually. This too shall pass...it may last longer that we hope, but we'll get through it!

Enjoy the Sun Shine and listen to the calming Rain. Find relaxation and joy in both sides of nature. Count your blessings. We have all lost something, but remember what you still have.

On finding peace in the everyday

When you're feeling stressed, it can be helpful to take your mind off of things with a little break. Try some of these ideas to find peace again and take a moment for yourself.

Here are answers to the question, What is a technique that you use to feel peaceful during the day?

Find peace and joy in the little things around you.

Sitting and breathing properly, try to think positive things, try not to think about negative things.

Listening to classical or classic rock music: the Who, Moody Blues...upbeat tunes.

Sitting down and relaxing in the afternoon in my favorite chair

We hope these words of wisdom can help you get through difficult times, now and in the future. Thank you to our amazing members who submitted their advice!. If you'd like to submit your own words of wisdom, you can do so at seattleymca.org/wordsofwisdom

Through their financial and emotional support, members of the Y are helping us heal from the impact of coronavirus in greater Seattle. Together we are providing child care for first responders, feeding vulnerable kids, sheltering at-risk youth, and producing health and fitness resources for everyone to use. Learn more about membership during our temporary closure, or other ways how you can help the Y.

If you or someone you know needs help caring for their mental health, check out these resources in the greater Seattle area and Washington state.