Mental health expert warns 'set boundaries' heading into post-pandemic world

'Do things at your own pace and when you're comfortable'
Posted at 6:04 PM, Apr 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-22 18:32:07-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Lauren Azar didn’t have a difficult time adjusting to the restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I work from home,” she said. “I’m a writer and I work right next to my kitchen and have my office and it’s really nice because I get to stay home, and I’m surrounded by snacks.”

She’s a self-proclaimed introvert.

“Basically, it wasn’t that different because I’m kind of a homebody anyway,” Azar said.

Almost one year ago we spoke to her about the ease of that adjustment.

“You don’t have the pressure randomly for someone to enter your life, call you, text you, and say want to meet up, want to go out,” she told WPTV in May.

Shortly after that interview she lost her dog Bean and began to worry about her mental health.

“As long as I had him by my side, I was pretty satisfied and then I lost him,” she said.

Now, with one dose of the vaccine she’s facing a new pressure— what readjusting in a post-pandemic world will look like?

“I think I’m just much more aware of where people are, how we are standing, how we are talking,” she said.

“There is still a lot of anxiety because so much of this is still unknown,” she said.

Dr. Rachel Needle is a licensed psychologist. She said it’s important for everyone to set their boundaries.

“So, everyone has to do what we are comfortable with and at the place where we are most comfortable,” Needle said. “Introverts might more have to practice social interaction again because that might be something they had to originally do and then suddenly here’s a year where they haven’t had to do that. Do things at your own pace and when you’re comfortable.”