Tips on coping with isolation during the coronavirus from our president Terry Waite CBE
Listen to Terry Waite’s interview on Virgin Radio around his experiences in captivity and how to cope with corona virus isolation.
Words of comfort from Terry:
As we come to terms with Covid-19, right across the world there will be many people who are frightened, disappointed and angry. The world community faces a unprecedented situation and all our futures seem uncertain.
As a hostage many years ago I faced the very same feelings and had to learn how live under difficult circumstances. I had to learn how to keep hope alive. To recognise that virtually every disaster has a positive side to it although it may not be obvious at the time.
The future will be difficult for everyone and although we may be in isolation we are not alone. We all face a common threat. There will be suffering but in my days of solitude I said to myself, ‘Suffering, in most cases, need not destroy. Often out of suffering something creative can emerge.’
Many of the great works of art or literature have emerged from great suffering. It is quite possible that the same can be true for the situation through which we are now passing.
If we let it, eventually this seeming tragedy can and will be turned around. Let us keep hope alive and let this situation bring out the very best in all of us.
Five top tips for coping with isolation from Terry:
- Keep in contact with others via digital and other means, while staying safe and remaining physically apart.
- Keep yourself well: don’t slob around all day in pyjamas and a dressing gown!
- Keep up a routine: get up at a certain time, eat regular meals.
- Take exercise: dust off the exercise bike, do some online exercise or go for a walk.
- Take this time of restriction as an opportunity: do some of those things you’ve been meaning to do for years, such as reading that book that’s been on your shelves for years!
“In solitude we are in fact together, so keep hope alive and don’t allow despair to destroy a difficult but potentially creative period of your life.”
Terry Waite, a former Hostage negotiator, spent almost five years totally alone as a hostage himself.
The families we support are more in need of help than ever during the COVID-19 lock-down. The measures imposed exacerbate the great loneliness they are already experiencing and the general anxiety enhances their pre-existing worries. We are also continuing to support former hostages for whom this period of ‘isolation’ and restrictions may trigger post-traumatic stress symptoms. If you feel you can support us, please do HERE.