Finding Time Boundaries as We Learn About the Swine Flu – 3 Tips

sicknessFinding time to figure out what’s what, when it comes to the swine flu, is a challenge right now.  Any peek at the news media, be it print, on line, or on TV or radio, is going to yield lots of breaking news about the spread of the flu, and lots of frightening questions about where it might be headed.  How do you sort through it all?  How do you avoid panicking and, at the same time, not downplay what could be a serious world health challenge?

This is a situation where time related skills – and especially time boundaries – can be very, very helpful.

Here are 3 tips to think about, as we navigate these days of emerging and sometimes alarming news about this current outbreak of the swine flu:

  • Proportion:  First (and always) consider the source of the information that you are receiving.  Most news venues are also businesses.  They are trying to catch your eye and hold your interest.  As you can imagine, this may lead to some “hype.”  If you are feeling particularly alarmed about some information, you may want to check it out in several places – and pay special attention to public service and/or governmental sites where there is no incentive to embellish.  A quick look at the CDC home page is instructive in that the swine flu is but one of many public health concerns highlighted there.
  • Perspective: If you have young children, or other family members (including yourself) who are feeling very frightened about the emerging news, find time to sit down and talk about the feelings, about the news stories (and what is scary about them), and about what action or actions might make things feel better.  Often, simply having fears put out on the table gives some very welcome  and realistic perspective.  In addition, taking action, no matter how small, can be very empowering.  At this stage, talking about the news and gaining perspective is a great action to take!
  • Preparedness:  Are there things that you do need to do, to plan and prepare for the possibilities?  Right now the cases in this country are so scattered and so mild that there seems to be little call for putting lots of energy into preparedness.  If you are planning on traveling, you could think about precautions for avoiding catching a bug during your plane ride (not a bad idea anyway).  If you find that you are especially worried, you could also take time to talk to your family physician.

Time Boundaries may be especially important in the area of Preparedness right now.  If you are reacting very strongly to the news you are hearing, you may put more time into this area than you need to.  At this stage, Proportion and Perspective are key.  Maintain your time boundaries, monitor the situation – and deal with your feelings as they come up, so that your perspective stays as clear as possible.

How do you find yourself responding to the swine flu news that is swirling around us?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

What if you could find another hour every day? You can! You are invited to sign up and download The New Finding Time Boundary Template. It’s FREE, and when you sign up you will also receive (if you don’t already) my FREE, weekly Finding Time Tips and my FREE, monthly Award-Winning Finding Time E-zine!

Let’s explore time together …

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