Finding hope: Positivity and Self-compassion in the age of Coronavirus

Presented by:
Jennifer Sato-Veloz, LCSW
University Counseling Services

How are You?

In times of crisis it is NORMAL and UNDERSTANDABLE...

... to feel more stressed and irritable than usual

... to experience physical and emotional fatigue

... to be less productive and have trouble focusing

... to experience grief over things lost

What is positivity?

Positivity is NOT

  • Denial
  • Fantasy
  • Magical
  • Something we just make up
  • Something that is easy to automatically do

Positivity IS

  • Finding the real hope amidst the real pain
  • Seeing good that remains amidst losses
  • Celebrating the positives versus only focusing on the negatives
  • Something that gives strength to face the difficulties, it does not erase them
  • Something that takes a conscious effort; we have to FIND it

Benefits of Positivity

Thinking Positive - word association graphic

  • Improved mental and physical health
  • Strengthening of immune system
  • Increased life span
  • Lowering of distress response
  • Increase in resiliency coping skills
  • Increase in interpersonal connections
  • Contributes to greater sense of meaning in life

Reference: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/positive-thinking/art-20043950

"Tuning in" to Good

How have you been connecting with...

  • personal values
  • faith/spirituality
  • meaningful relationships
  • helping others
  • encouraging stories
  • nature/beauty/creativity
  • Other examples?

Mindfulness EXERCISE

Think back over past 24 hours

What encouraged you?

What you brought peace?

Where did you find hope?


Poem: It's okay that we are

It's okay that we are:
Not feeling as secure as before
Not feeling as productive as before
Not feeling as caring as before
Not feeling as strong as before
Not feeling as happy as before

Poem: It's also okay to

It's also okay to:
Take time to prioritize your health
Take time to be concerned about your loved ones' health
Take time to be concerned about your community
Take time to focus on self-care
Take time to search for meaning and purpose in life
Take time to connect with others
Take time to become a part of something that is bigger than ourselves

We are all in this together

We are all in this together


Instagram Credit: Young Lee, PsyD

Helpful Resources



YouTube Videos

SGN (Some Good News) with John Krasinski


University Counseling Services:
(818) 677-2366 (for remote appointments)
(818) 677-2366 #3 (24 hour crisis line)

Oasis Wellness Center Virtual Programming

Finding hope this week

What is one thing you can do to "tune in" to something good this week?