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Emotions Run The Gamut As California Prepares To Reopen

The towering entrance to the Getty Museum gas masked people walking in and out of the glass doors and a sign that reads: "Welcome back to your Getty. Bienvenidos de nuevo al Getty."
The first visitors arrive at the Getty Museum on it's reopening day, May 25,
(Valerie Macon
AFP via Getty Images)
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On June 15, California's economy will fully reopen after more than a year of COVID-19 restrictions and closures.

Among the general population, reactions around reopening are likely to range from excitement to anxiety. Dr. Annabelle De St. Maurice, an assistant professor of pediatrics at UCLA, says different risk tolerance and comfort levels will likely affect people's behavior as society reopens.

"People may choose to wear masks for longer than others, and may choose to wear them indoors,” she said. “We really shouldn't be shaming people for doing that and being cautious."

Miguel Gallardo, a professor of psychology at Pepperdine University, suggests that those who feel especially anxious about reopening activities should avoid spending too much time reading news about the pandemic.

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"Be mindful about what information you're consuming, how often, how much,” he said. “Be intentional about that; when you go to get information, where you're getting that information from, and limit the amount of information that you're getting."

Gallardo says focusing on the things you have control over, rather than those you don’t, can also help reduce anxiety.