How to maintain a healthy outlook in the industry when difficult clients get you down

Given that our work is centered in our sexual selves, it often feels easier to just ignore bad feelings and hope they go away. But few of us truly have the ability to shake off negative encounters like they never happened. Instead, hurt and insult fester, poisoning our self-esteem, rattling our minds while shutting our bodies down.  – Lola Devina

 

A tweet popped up recently that asked, how do you maintain a healthy outlook when you work day-in and day-out with entitled, toxic, and/or abusive customers. This is such a big and important question. To answer it, I looked to two of my all-time favorite go-to goddesses: Lola Devina and Brené Brown.

 

Sex worker and author, Lola Devina, gives clued-in heartfelt advice about how to cope with the emotional toll of sex work. Brené Brown’s anti-shame work is changing the way our culture thinks about shame and compassion. The following advice is chosen from their work and the work of others.

 

Separating the bad that is thrown at us from the outside world from our own unhelpful beliefs

 

  1. Ask, What is the story that I am telling myself?

 

When something happens that triggers strong emotions, we often immediately create a story to make sense of what happened. These stories are often one-sided worst-case scenarios, and they seldom contain the full truth.  Brené Brown.

 

Brené calls these stories the Stormy First Draft. “SFD is our brain’s way of making sense of something when we don’t have full information. We are a meaning-making species. In the absence of data, we make up stories because having complete information is a self-protective survival skill. But these stories often magnify our fears and anxieties.”

 

Example: A guy on Twitter tweeted some horrible things about me.

 

The story I am telling myself is: He is an asshole. Why is he being so mean? I don’t even know him. ..I must have done something wrong.. at least, I could have handled it better. If only I was (wittier, more professional, better, ______ ), then trolls like him wouldn’t target me.

 

  1. Reality check your story. Often, we fill in information gaps with details that are biased by our fears. Reality checking helps us to separate what they did from what we believe.

 

Reality check: All I know about Twitter guy is that he was being abusive. What I don’t know is if he is an asshole or that I could have done anything differently to stop his abuse.

 

Assumptions about the abusive Twitter guy, our abilities, or our self-worth create an emotional hook that can easily spiral downward. Anger, resentment, and self-criticism can send us into a black hole or exhaust us while we suppress the emotional pain.

 

 

*Helpful extra: Listen to Lola on Anger, Brenè on Stories and Brenè on Shame.

 

 

Getting to know your own emotional hooks

 

  1. Ask, how did the situation make me think about myself?

 

When something bad happens at work, it is natural to feel deflated for a while. But feelings that fester can signal that our own negative self-beliefs have been triggered. What beliefs did this encounter, situation, or bad day bring to the surface for you?

 

The story that I am telling myself: If only I were  …. It would be easier.

What it makes me think about myself: I am not good enough.

 

 

*Helpful extras: read the Science behind Inner critics and Steps to defuse inner critics.

 

 

  1. Use a reality-checking app to unhook from harmful self-beliefs

 

Upsetting self-beliefs are often based on a morsel of truth and a whole lot more of exaggerations, anxious predictions, and/or oversimplification. Use the free app Moodtools Thought Record Diary for Android or Apple.

 

 

  1. Unhook from stigma and shame

Davina explains in her book, Thriving in Sex Work,

..clients show up with all their baggage, expecting us to deal. They want to be turned on; they want to get off. They crave beauty, kink, variety, danger, and role-play.

Often, clients are ashamed of their bodies, their desires, their infidelities and/or their patronage.

Like black holes in reverse, clients bend badness and blame away from themselves. I call it “outsourcing shame.” […] Clients also wrestle with guilt. Many clients are married or partnered or come from religious backgrounds, taking a little taste of something they don’t want anyone to know about. Nobody wants to feel bad while paying to feel good, so they shunt their ick onto us..

Davina offers relief,

It is not nice to be on the receiving end of bad behavior, especially as a reward for doing our jobs so well. In the immediate aftermath of getting slimed by a client, you may well be furious: Listen to Lola on Anger. If you’re feeling ashamed, deflated, or gross: Listen to the shame exercise.

 

*Helpful extras: Read How to break the shame cycle.

 

 

Leaning on your emotional resources

 

  1. Self-care

Davina’s website offers advice from her book. Many of the important subjects, many chapters are free to read or to listen to. Here is an excerpt from, When a client makes you feel like crap.

First: Take care of your body. When we’re humiliated, that hurt has to move through our bodies somatically. Very few of us learn this as children. Instead, we’re taught to rely on our intellect to process bad emotions. But our minds can’t move what’s stored in our muscles and joints and voice boxes and bones. So, as soon as you can:

  • Get right in the shower.Wash the day away.
  • Eat moderately and mindfully, but only if you’re hungry.Don’t starve yourself as punishment or stuff yourself in an attempt to dull the pain.
  • Unless the gym is your happiest place on earth, don’t force yourself through your regular routine.That’s like piling on extra homework when you’re already failing class. You’ll either spend that time zoning out, or counting the seconds until your workout is over—neither is good. The best self-care is to be fully present, addressing your feelings directly.
  • Scream into a pillow, kick a punching bag, take a long walk or bike ride. Play loud music, dance like you don’t care, sing at the top of your lungs. Move hard and fast and long enough so that you’re breathing hard. Wear yourself out with it.
  • While moving, say what you’re feeling out loud: “Scared, scared, scared, scared.” “Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch.” “Pissed, pissed, pissed, pissed.” This lets you fully feel your emotions in your body, throat, and mind, allowing that energy to move through you.
  • Call a buddy, if you can—get yourself some sympathy, by all means.  For some perspective, it can help to ask the question: Am I going to still be mad about this a year from now?

 

  1. Compassion

Compassion means feeling concerned for someone’s suffering and wanting to help. The feeling itself creates mood changing brain chemicals.

Extend compassion to Twitter guy. Yep, that guy.

Davina says,

I know—it’s not fair. Why do we have to be the ones to turn the other cheek when we’re depleted and aggravated and insulted? But as the Buddha said, “You will not be punished for your anger, but by your anger.” When we fight fire with fire, the whole world turns to ash. Instead, we fight fire with water.

To extend compassion, Davina suggests,

Maybe they were in the middle of a shit day far worse than anything you can imagine. Maybe they just lost their job or their grandmother or their dog—send them a blast of unconditional love. That handsy fan with no manners? See them for what they are, someone lost in their neediness, stunted by desire for what feels just out of reach.

Muster what compassion you can manage—people with happy lives don’t act like [that]. Picture your tormentor’s face in front of you, and breathe into a simple prayer of forgiveness and acceptance.

Compassion doesn’t mean that you excuse or put up with bad behavior. Take whatever steps you need to protect yourself. Compassion enables you to let go of anger and resentment that so often leads to burn out, so that you can refocus on caring for yourself.

Extend compassion to yourself, even to your inner critics.

Our inner critics are really just bullies inside us. What is most often true about bullies is that they show anger because they are themselves scared. This is true in the outside world, and this is true in our heads.

Extending compassion to our inner critic doesn’t mean agreeing with it or allowing it to govern us. It means that we listen, understand and gently translate its destructive input into something more constructive.

 

*Helpful extra: Read for steps on How to defuse your inner critics.

 

  1. Practice Radical Acceptance

Radical acceptance means that we don’t try to change anything, rather we accept ourselves exactly how we are in this moment. Perhaps the hardest part of this exercise is accepting that so much of clients’ behavior is outside of your control. You may not be able to control what is thrown at you but you can influence how you react to it.

Radical Acceptance is Reminding Yourself Every Day, You Are Fabulous. You Are Loved. You Are Doing Your Best.

Acceptance is not a one-time occurrence. We choose acceptance this moment and then we choose acceptance when we start to struggle and then we choose it again. Radical acceptance is often much harder in practice than it sounds, but it is your best bet at stopping the negative spiral and building resilience in the industry.

 

*Helpful extra: Read How to handle cam loneliness

 

  1. Supportive relationships

Tapping into a supportive relationship, even with just a short phone call, triggers the cuddle hormone, oxytocin, in our brains. It can change our mood in minutes.

Hug someone or cuddle a fur-baby. A 20-second full-body hug or cuddling a pet triggers positive feelings. Even cuddling a favorite stuffed animal can create a sense of well-being.

Get a cam buddy. Davina recommends buddying up with a colleague. Agree to call each other for emotional support or distraction when you are having an off day.

One dear friend of mine is the best at this — whenever I’m in crisis, she doesn’t try to be a mind reader. She simply asks, ‘What do you need from me right now?’ A reality check? Reassurance? Advice? A shoulder to cry on? Active, loving listening? The best way to get the help you crave is to tell people what you need. Don’t assume they know, don’t make them guess.

Be someone’s super awesome support. Or reach out whenever you are feeling low. As well as psychotherapy and coaching, Pineapple Support offers emotional support in the form of 24-hour peer-to-peer chat. You can volunteer any hours that are convenient for you and be an awesome support to your peers.

Connect with your peers and tap into that network of super awesome Pineapple Support just for you. Remember, if you feel overwhelmed or just need to connect with someone, Pineapple Support is here for you. Contact us at PineappleSupport.com.

Virtual Wellness Event For Adult Performers In The UK

Pineapple Support, the adult industry’s leading mental health non-profit, together with sponsors AdultWork and AWSummit, will be holding an online wellness event specifically aimed at the adult industry in the UK. The three-day event, which will be held from September 23-25, will include live workshops and interactive webinars from Pineapple Support therapists, as well activities such as breathwork, meditation and workouts.  

“We’re really excited to bring this event to the UK,” says Pineapple Support founder Leya Tanit. “We’ll be focusing on self-care, mental and physical well-being and education. There will be presentations from UK-based organizations NUM and Dean Street, as well as legal information from sex worker-postive law firm Gillen De Alwis Solicitors. To top it all off, the event will end with five hours of comedy and music to get  feet moving and faces smiling.” 

Tanit founded Pineapple Support in 2018 after a string of losses in the adult industry from depression and other mental illnesses. The organisation, which is a registered 501(c)3 tax-deductible qualifying charity in the US and a registered charity in the UK, has so far connected nearly nine hundred adult performers with mental health services, including free and low-cost, therapy, counseling and emotional support. 

The three-day Virtual Wellness Event will go live online at 10am BST on September 23rd. Those that wish to register for the event should visit https://pineapplesupport.org/wellness/ for more information. 

 

The following workshops and webinars will be hosted during the event (all times BST): 

September 23 

10am – 10:45am: The Power of Self Hypnosis (with Sinead Rochford) 

11.30pm -12.30pm: National Ugly Mugs (with Dr Raven Bowen, Hannah Wilcox and Rosie Hodsdon) 

12.45am – 1:45pm: Dean Street Sexual Health Clinic (with Rachel Ali) 

2pm – 2:45pm: Pilates Full Body Conditioning (with Ami Collins) 

3pm- 3:45pm: Mental Health in the Adult Industry (with Leya Tanit) 

4pm – 4:45pm: Breathwork and Yoga Nidra for Inner-Healing (with Jess Birks) 

 

September 24 

10am – 10:45 am: Managing Adversities Through Self-Compassion (with Silva Neves) 

11am – 11:45 am: Introduction to Yin Yoga (with Michele Karban) 

12pm- 12:45pm: The Use of Hypnotherapy in Overcoming, Stress, Depression and Anxiety (with George Lewis) 

2pm- 2:45pm: Mindful Eating (with Sofie Every) 

3pm – 3:45pm: EMDR – Treatment for PTSD (with Fulvio Maciaccia) 

4pm-4:45pm: What it Means to be a Pineapple Listener (with Areneae Mactans) 

 

September 25 

10 -10:45am: Navigating Relationship Conflicts — the Top Tips (with Silva Neves) 

11am- 11:45am: Vinyasa Flow Yoga Class to Awaken Your Inner Goddess (with Jess Birks) 

12pm- 12:45pm: Legal Review (with Gillen De Alwis Solicitors) 

2pm-2:45pm: How to Look After Yourself Emotionally in an Uncertain World (with Silva Neves) 

3pm- 3:45pm: Thank You from Pineapple Support 

4pm- 5pm: Live Acoustic Set (with Elijah Miller) 

5 pm – 5:15 pm: Comedy Set (with Dan Nightingale) 

5:15 pm – 5:45pm: Acoustic Set (with Ishod Black) 

5:45pm – 6pm: Comedy Set (with Dan Nightingale) 

6pm-7pm: DJ set (compiled by Sonic Emporium) 

7pm – 9pm: DJ set (compiled by Man Power) 

9pm-10pm: Journey Men DJ Mix 

Pineapple Support, Pornhub To Hold Breathwork Event for International Whores’ Day

Pineapple Support, the adult industry’s leading mental health nonprofit, will host a special event focused on breathwork, sponsored by Pornhub. The event will take place on June 2nd at 1pm EST, coinciding with International Whore’s Day celebrations.

“Sex-workers can often play the role of therapists, taking on the emotions of clients as well as their emotional struggles,” says breathwork specialist and coach Sapphire. “Breathwork is a magical powerful tool for transformation and healing, which allows us access to inner blockages, negative thoughts, emotions and patterns not easily accessed through traditional therapy. This can lead us to releasing emotional baggage and a release of a shift in old patterns resulting in much needed transformation.”

One person attending the event will be randomly selected to receive $100 of Pornhub merchandise, as well as a course of one-on-one breathwork sessions with Sapphire.

“Each breathwork journey is unique and teaches us how we benefit from breathing fully and consciously, at the same time bringing changes into our lives for the better,” says Tanit. “Breathwork can help reduce the symptoms associated with anxiety, depression, PTSD, ADD and insomnia. Join us on June 2nd when together we can release this energy and unite as a community.”

Pineapple Support was founded in early 2018 by British performer Leya Tanit in response to losses in the adult industry from depression, addiction and other mental illnesses. The organisation, which is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit in the United States and a registered charity in the UK, has so far connected over one thousand adult performers to mental health services, including free and low-cost, therapy, counseling and emotional support.

For more information and to sign-up for the Breathwork Event, please visit https://pineapplesupport.org/breathworks/.

Pineapple Support and Streamate Host Three Day Wellness Event

Streamate and Pineapple Support to host a three day wellness event to help alleviate stress and anxiety caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The event held on 18-20th of May, offers anyone in the industry the opportunity to schedule a free, 30 minute, one-on-one guided meditation session with Pineapple Support therapist, Ingrid d’Aquin. During the consultations  you can “Enjoy a moment of catharsis and leave the session with relaxation techniques you can start using immediately to calm and center yourself.” said d’Aquin.

D’Aquin will also be hosting a webinar on May 18th at 2pm EST to discuss the effects of depression, anxiety and isolation. “We are in unprecedented times” says d’Aquin, “and you are not alone if you are trying to figure out how you are going to see your way through the depression, anxiety and isolation. Join us in this webinar where we will explore what makes a person resilient and learn simple take home techniques to cultivated a stronger ability to bounce back and adapt to life’s fast balls.”

“The world as we know it has changed – at least for now.” sad Liz, director of marketing at Streamate. “We are all learning to adjust, and some may be forgetting about self-care, an important part of our overall well-being. Streamate is not only proud to partner with Pineapple support on this event, but feel it’s imperative to offer all individuals the ability re-center and gain focus to combat loneliness during these interesting times.”

Pineapple Support was founded in 2018 by British performer Leya Tanit in response to losses in the adult industry from depression, addiction and other mental illnesses. The organization, which is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit in the United States and a registered charity in the UK, has so far connected over 1,000 adult performers to mental health services, including free and low-cost, therapy, counseling and emotional support.

“Covid-19 has affected all of us, it is important to take time out, away from your daily stresses and have a moment of calm and the wellness event aims to provide those within the industry with just that.” explains Tanit “During each session Ingrid will guide you with breathing techniques and exercises that you can transfer to your daily routine.”

To book your free 30 minute consultation, please visit: https://calendly.com/ingriddaquinpsychotherapist.

To attend the Webinar please visit: https://www.PineappleSupport.org/webinars

Maintaining a Routine While In Isolation

You’re stuck at home, all your usual hangouts are closed, you can’t do the day to day activities you would usually be doing. It’s all too easy to say “fuck it” and stay in bed, sloth around the house eating random combinations of whatever is in the cupboard and watching crappy TV.

Having a day or two every now and again to wallow in our own filth and enjoy the pleasures of numbing our minds and bodies, is perfectly acceptable. In fact, I recommend it. This is not however a healthy way to spend the majority of your time, particularly in isolation.

Days will drag and moods will drop (and drop and drop) until you find yourself in a downward spiral that is hard to get out of. If you’re currently struggling with this, it’s okay, you’re not alone.

Here are my tips for creating a routine while in Isolation.

Early Morning
Each morning I get up at around 7.30am, feed all my animals (question why I have so many animals), make myself a hot drink and, weather depending, sit in the garden for around half an hour. I use this time to catch up on personal social media and messages, to reflect on the day ahead and to be grateful for all that I have.

Morning
As someone who regularly works from home, I am a huge advocate of dressing for work. The does not mean a suit and full make up, it does mean taking a shower, brushing my hair and putting on something that isn’t pyjamas.

By 8.30am I try to be sat behind my desk and to start setting out what I hope to achieve that day.
Most of us are privileged to be able to do some work from home. Be it editing movies you haven’t released yet, doing admin and upkeep on your clips store or cam profile. Work on your premium site profiles or interact with fans. Use this time to do all the niggling jobs you haven’t yet found the time to do.
If you can’t work from home, get creative, look at picking up an old hobby or discovering a new one.

Each day at 10am I take an hours break from work to exercise with a friend online. We do this by picking a video on YouTube and starting it at the same time.
For me, training is one of those things I will continue to put off, unless there’s someone to hold me accountable. Training with a friend, not only makes it more fun, but creates an environment where you can both encourage each other to keep active.

Afternoon
At around 1pm I take a break from the computer to create a healthy lunch and spend an hour trying not to think about work. Then back to the grindstone until between 5 and 6pm.
I have had to be very strict with myself regarding the hours I work. When you work from home it is all too easy to continue working long into the night and forgetting the importance of “switching off”. As the saying goes; “You can’t drink from an empty cup”.

Evening
Once work is done for the day, I make time to call and check in on friends, either via text or online video platform. It’s actually been amazing to connect with people so regularly. This is something that ordinarily I don’t have time to do as I am usually rushing around to complete some errand. I feel that during this time of isolation, I have made deeper connections with my friends. Paying closer attention to each other’s emotions and learning so much more about one another.

Sometimes I take this time to learn a little Spanish (been living in Spain 5 years and can only just about order a glass of wine).

Dinner usually takes about an hour to prepare. At least once a week I like trying new recipes found online and “making do” with alternate ingredients from the backs of my cupboards, there have been mixed results. Of course, I’m not Mary Poppin’s, some evenings are spent eating left over’s or getting a food delivery.

Late Evening
By the time dinner is finished it is usually around 8pm and time to sit with the fur babies and watch a series or movie on Netflix.

At around 10.30-11pm I ensure that the house is tidy and dishes are washed, etc. This way before heading to bed I know that tomorrow will start with a clean fresh slate.

 

Everyone’s routine is different, the important thing is to have a routine. If there are days that you really don’t feel like getting out of bed or doing some of the things on your list, that’s okay. Let yourself have those days and enjoy them.

Try writing down a daily schedule for yourself, break the day up into segments and make it as detailed as possible. Do your best to stick to your schedule for a week and see how you feel at the end of it.

I do hope that this will have inspired you to KEEP GOING. These strange times will all be over soon and life will return to normal. STAY STRONG.

If you feel you need emotional support or counselling to help you through these unprecedented times. Please, reach out. PineappleSupport.org

Pineapple Support Sponsors Free Online Therapy Course

A free, online therapy course, sponsored by Pineapple Support, launches Tuesday, April 14. The seven-week course will utilize Dialectic Behavior Therapy (DBT) to help industry members develop tolerance skills while in isolation during the production hold.

The two-hour weekly sessions, led by Pineapple Support therapist Sophie Graham, will be held from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. (PDT) and focus on coping mechanisms that can be used during times of crisis.

“The COVID-19 pandemic is causing lots of people to experience distress,” explained Graham. “This might be because of fear of getting sick, or it could be financial stress, or the impact of being in closer than usual quarters with the folks that we live with. This course is all about finding ways to reduce your distress — using your body as well as your brain. It helps you to develop your capacity to manage distress better.”

To reserve a spot, email contact@pineapplesupport.org.

“It can be a struggle to cope with overwhelming events,” said Pineapple Support Founder Leya Tanit. “We can end up in crisis, and that can cause us to behave in ways that cause us shame or create practical problems in our lives. This course equips you with DBT skills to manage distressing situations without derailing your life or relationships.”

For the latest updates, follow Pineapple Support online and on Twitter.

Continue Regular Therapy Online

There’s a lot to be stressed about – Virus, friends, family, economy, jobs, empty shelves at the grocery store. If you are feeling anxious or depressed, you are not alone.

While everyone is unique in their reactions to isolation, you may be likely to have feelings of loneliness, sadness, fear, anxiety and stress. These emotions are perfectly normal given the current circumstances.

A recent study published by The Lancet reported negative psychological effects of quarantine including post-traumatic stress symptoms, confusion and anger. These effects can be felt both during and after the period of quarantine.

During this isolation period you may be feeling cut off from the rest of the world, unable to continue your usual routine and with no control over what is happening. It is important to create a new normal (for now) routine, to maintain connections with your loved ones and to keep the mind and body healthy and active.

It is important to practice self-compassion, to keep up to date with the facts and necessary information on the virus, without allowing our anxiety to get the better of us.

Taking steps to protect your mental health

If you find that you are struggling with your emotions during this period of isolation, it is important to seek professional help. Many therapists are shifting to online therapy and all Pineapple Support therapists, counsellors and coaches provide teletherapy either via video platform or over the telephone.

If you are currently seeing a therapist and have concerns regarding switching from in person to online therapy, you may discover that online therapy works better for you and your needs. But, if you discover that you still prefer in-person appointments, there is no need to worry. This situation is not permanent and once the social distancing efforts have subsided, you can return to regular, face-to-face meetings.

If you feel you could benefit from speaking with therapist and qualify for Pineapple Support subsidized therapy, please reach out and we will connect you with one of our industry friendly therapists, counsellors or coaches.

 

Resources

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/does-online-therapy-actually-work_n_58af1ffde4b060480e05bd79?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAAA-DFVkQ3Y-cDk80cBm1W3jy-Kchis-a0Ocm0358ur5sF6l6RiWhEjWlMbXnPyKCc3SZ1ueKQ6-Il9HV__1a9Gv7OLCqyy2cacPqlPadhmQnQCFHkbMP1NRVwF9HTau9b-Lb3GLGTOFSfVMU8U6FXi1gb6uXWmgvC3qzz4s-gkvc

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2F2019-ncov%2Fprepare%2Fmanaging-stress-anxiety.html

https://www.verywellmind.com/transition-to-online-therapy-during-coronavirus-4799808

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-pacific-heart/202003/coronavirus-anxiety-should-i-see-my-therapist-face-face

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140673620304608

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15324539

https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(20)30460-8/fulltext#seccestitle150

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/20/coronavirus-wake-up-millennials-prioritize-your-mental-health-right-now-says-psychotherapist.html

Maintain A Connection With the People You Love

In the current crisis, when we are being asked to self-isolate and practice social distancing, it is more important than ever to maintain a connection with the people you love.

As humans we are naturally pack animals, this makes communication and positive social connections essential for our mental health and help us cope in times of stress. Communication during isolation can be as simple as phoning a friend to share your emotional experience, using videoconferencing technology to check in with a family member, or spending quality time with the people you live with.

 

Loneliness and the feeling of being disconnected to humanity is natural during these times and some may feel powerless to these emotions. Reach out to your friends and family to check that they are okay. A simple text message or phone call to let a person know that you are thinking of them can bring needed assurance and positive energy.

Many of us are living with a partner, house mates, family members, it is important to have communication and relationships with those outside of the house as tensions are sure to rise.

Luckily for us, we live in a time of technology and the options we have are vast. Google hang-out, Skype, Face-Time, WhatsApp, Houseparty, Zoom, to name a few – these platforms are free to use and a great, fun way to virtually connect when in-person contact isn’t possible.

Whenever possible, try to use video calling for social communication. Facial expressions and body language form a large part of human interaction and alert us to a person’s mood, giving a much deeper and effective connection than voice call. In these times of isolation, non-verbal communication has even greater importance as they can provide a feeling of “presence”.

We would love to hear your ideas on how to stave off loneliness during isolation. Here are some of our ideas:

1) Have a virtual date night with a friend or another couple.
2) Start a new activity together, such as reading a book or watching a series. Check in with each other and call or text to discuss.
3) Arrange a virtual party with games or a dress theme.
4) Learn something new together, like a language, cooking or art.

However you decide to communicate with your loved ones during isolation, please remember; You are not alone. We are all in this together.

If you would like to speak to a Pineapple Support volunteer please visit PineappleSupport.org

 

With love from Leya Tanit

resources

https://www.psychology.org.au/getmedia/d7cb8abd-3192-4b8f-a245-ace9b8ef44d5/20APS-IS-COVID-19-Isolation-P1.pdf

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/conscious-communication/202003/maintaining-relationships-while-practicing-social-distancing

https://www.sailingscuttlebutt.com/2020/03/25/phil-sharp-tips-to-succeed-in-isolation/

https://www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html

Get Creative

Pineapple Support is an organization that is based upon communication and human connection. The world is now in a situation where this connection is not always possible, many of us have been left with a lot of spare time on our hands and are unsure of what to do with it.

Getting creative, whether it be art, writing, sewing, baking or any other craft, is a great way to keep the mind active and possibly learn a new skill. You may even find a talent you never knew you had.

Crafting and getting creative have a number of benefits for our mental health, including stress reduction; a way to regulate strong emotions such as anger; self-efficacy improvement; and a reduction in your chances of developing mild cognitive impairment, among other things.

Focussing on a craft can also take the mind off the current news and headlines, which is something we all need to do to care for our mental health and well-being.

 

Below is a list of websites offering tutorials and ideas for getting creative during isolation.

 

We would love for you to share with us your creations or ideas for others to get creative via Twitter @pineappleYSW

 

With love, Leya Tanit

 

 

Resources

https://www.realhomes.com/news/7-craft-ideas-to-try-while-in-social-isolation

https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/crafts-bored-in-quarantine_ca_5e78fa23c5b6f5b7c548f2f9?guccounter=1&guce_referrer=aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuZ29vZ2xlLmNvbS8&guce_referrer_sig=AQAAALkd2efUtx7PXAu4i-ocsXOELSD0Yep7QDOVcvZxG3UVAm5189zZ3XS3FCRMOQH_uI4RrAcbuN5fapWFXvbQxIzbV-F6rhihJH4IsXJyqwu2q5juA-7RTl9md48u748qtERNmHJBWJFAHOAHAghp7xFS_RLH9fkBAC0B-Y0q97MS

https://www.craftscouncil.org.uk/articles/up-skill-in-isolation-online-craft-classes-you-can-do-from-home/

https://www.marchnetwork.org/creative-isolation

4 Ways to look after yourself in a crisis

Hello you, how’re you feeling at the moment?

I’m honest with you, I’m feeling overwhelmed by this worldwide crisis and by all the information my mind, body, and soul gets fed with. I try to stay positive and see the crisis as a chance but some days it is more difficult to stay positive than others.

This is why I have decided to write some positive and uplifting words to show you that you are not alone in this situation and that there are options to create positive emotions and rituals in a time of uncertainty.

So what can you do if you feel anxious and overwhelmed? How can you find a way to ease your mind?

Here are 4 ways you can try

1. Limit news and social media

It is important to stay informed but it can get too much for our mental and physical health to digest all this news. The fact that most of the news you see at the moment is negative can grow fear, anxiety, and depression.

So why not limit your daily news and social media consumption?

Instead of listening to the news or scrolling through social media in the morning and evening, create a nourishing morning ritual and a soothing evening ritual. This will help you to start your day energised and to fall asleep less worrying.

2. Routine

In times of change and uncertainty, it is important to have a daily routine. A daily routine can help you to cope with the change, easing anxiety and stress. The routine you create for yourself can be your anchor and can make you feel grounded. By incorporating positive daily habits and self-care into your daily routine your mental and physical health will profit.

What could you incorporate into your routine?
Movement
Meditation
Yoga
Morning + Bedtime ritual
Healthy diet
Time to unwind and relax
Time with your loved ones

3. Connect + communicate

As we are all in this together, it is important to connect with people you feel safe, held, grounded and loved. Even if you can’t see our loved ones physically, you can meet them virtually. You can call them, video call them, e-mail or even write them a letter.

Organise and schedule coffee/tea dates with your friends or a loved family member. You can schedule a date to practice yoga, meditation or a fitness workout with your best friend or training buddy.

Create an online book club, an art class, coffee club, music class, etc. There are no rules, so let your imagination flow and create something to connect with each other 🙂

4. Be kind and compassionate – Loving-Kindness Meditation

I want to invite you to close your eyes and take 20 minutes for yourself to listen to this loving-kindness meditation from Kristin Neff:

https://self-compassion.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/LKM_cleaned.mp3

As words are so powerful, try to repeat these words every day:

May I be safe
May I be happy
May I be healthy
May I live with ease

We’re all different and we all have different needs, so it is important to find your way to take care of yourself. I recommend that you try out different things and see how you feel. How do you already care for yourself mentally and physically? Is there something new you want to try?

I also want to tell you that whatever you are feeling at the moment is okay. Try to talk to someone if your anxiety or stress gets overwhelming. I think it is really important that we talk, help and take care of each other.

I hope you liked this article. If you have questions, inputs or want to schedule an online session with me, I would love to hear from you: therapy@denise-wolf.com

Written by Denise Wolf

denise-wolf.com