One thing that makes the pandemic so challenging is how rapidly it changes, Elizabeth Tracey reports


Some people quip that change is the only constant in life, and that’s demonstrably true about Covid-19 and the pandemic. Karen Swartz, a psychiatrist at Johns Hopkins, says that very quality is one of the greatest challenges for most of us in dealing with it.

Swartz: Change itself is challenging. Some people who are more extroverted embrace change and enjoy change. Those of us who are more introverted find change inherently challenging. There are other factors that make change harder to manage. These include whether it’s a short term or a chronic issue, whether it’s expected or unexpected, or whether it’s a choice or imposed. Unfortunately, the Covid pandemic incorporates all of the most challenging elements: at least initially was unexpected, it’s been chronic, and it feels very much imposed.  :31

Swartz says simply being aware of one’s own response to change can be helpful, and notes that other coping strategies like limiting one’s attention to both news and social media may be good strategies. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.