NORFOLK, Va. - When the pandemic first started, it was hard to envision that we'd still be dealing with restrictions seven months later.
With the months dragging on, we're starting to see something referred to as "COVID fatigue."
As people get tired of the restrictions and want to see more tangible progress, Virginia Tech professor Dr. Charles Calderwood says some people are easing up on the safety measures they once took.
Calderwood says he sees a lot of similarities with this situation and "workplace burnout," a chronic feeling in which you're emotionally drained and feel like you can't accomplish things.
"I think we're seeing the same thing settle in to some degree here where we've been dealing with the pandemic for quite some time now," said Calderwood, "We all feel really emotionally drained. We're not getting to have our normal social interactions and connections with other individuals, and I think that that contributes to us feeling like we can't accomplish the day-to-day goals, when we can."
Calderwood says there are ways to fight back against "COVID fatigue" psychologically and physically.
One of those is to prioritize yourself.
Although it may be tough to relax if you're feeling insecure financially or worried about the coronavirus, Calderwood says you need to find time for yourself.
It can also be beneficial to find ways to help other people.
Physically, Calderwood says eating healthy and exercising are surprisingly effective at making you feel better.
"Even if it might not necessarily feel impactful just to run for 20 minutes, it really does have a payoff," said Calderwood.
Calderwood says finding things like this that we can do as individuals can have a broader impact on our communities.