11 ‘Game Of Thrones’ Quotes To Help You Survive The COVID-19 Pandemic

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game of thrones quotes for getting through covid-19 pandemic

Fantasy novelist George R.R. Martin ominously warned his readers many-a-time that “winter is coming.”

If you happen to be a fan of his series A Song of Ice and Fire, which was later adapted into the HBO series, Game of Thrones, then perhaps you can appreciate the parallels between the fantasy and horror of the series and the real life horror that people have experienced this past year.

There are a lot of lessons to be learned from the series, and many Game of Thrones quotes that can help you remain resilient as we come up to our own long winter during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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In the year 2020, many have lost their lives. Many have lost loved ones. Many have lost health, job, finances, and stabilizing social outlets, leaving them scarred by loneliness.

Many have experienced emotional strains in their families and intimate relationships. And many are experiencing an ongoing existential crisis. One that will haunt them with questions now and in the years to come.

“Winter” did come in 2020 with the start of this pandemic. And winter will come again sooner than most want, as this pandemic is far from over.

The zombie apocalypse of the “Long night battle of the Night King and his army of the dead," a.k.a., “The White Walkers” of the GOT series, feels much like this long year that 2020 has delivered, and what 2021 may continue with.

So, with that in mind, you may be searching for a semblance of hope for what the future may bring to help you physically and emotionally ride out this long year and next.

Here are 11 Game of Thrones quotes to help you survive the COVID-19 pandemic.

1. “The most courageous thing we can do is stare the truth in the face.” — Sansa Stark

As the medical community treats the sick and scientists work around the clock to create a vaccine, most will have to fight this virus apocalypse by waiting it out. 

We must commit to doing simple things, like listening to the science — even when the understanding of this virus changes, wearing masks to protect others from getting it, and practiceing social distancing, in spite of its inconveniences.

2. “Fear cuts deeper than a sword.” — Arya Stark

In any life situation, when you feel fear, it’s actually valuable information for your mind, body, and spirit to filter through and make peace with before you take action.

That doesn’t have to be a long process, but sometimes it can be, depending upon the situation. And with this virus, it’s totally appropriate to feel fearful.

The fear around the unknowns can be overwhelming, and it’s easy to get hijacked and parazlized by it. By breathing into and befriending the fear of your “what if" thoughts, you can change your mindset.

3. “Laughter is poison to fear.” — Catelyn Stark

This is a great strategy to help you befriend your fear. Laughter releases endorphins and changes your brain in a good way. It can help you rise above the cacophony of noise that most feel during this chaotic time.

Taking time to laugh and be playful in any small way is an important survival strategy.

4. “Chaos is a ladder, not a pit.” — Lord Baelish

Everything in life changes, ends, and dies. This change or endinging then creates an opportunity. It allows for the possibility of some kind of rebirth once you grieve your losses and set your mind on starting a new chapter.

This pandemic is forcing everyone to do that, one way or another. It’s a chaotic time, but there is an opportunity for you, if you can yield to what is and discover what can be.

5. “What do we say to the lord of death? Not today!" — Syrio Forel

And you say it loud and clear by practicing social distancing, mask wearing, good hygiene, and mindfulness.

6. “When the snow falls and the white winds blow, the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives.” — Ned Stark

The "pack of wolves" metaphor is a core theme in this series, and so important to try to implement during this time of social distancing.

One major component of human suffering this pandemic has brought to light is human loneliness. It’s always been there, but during pre-COVID-19 times, people had more distractions. Some people feel lonely in their intimate relationships, and others are just alone.

Finding ways to connect with others and create a pack, whether it’s online or socially distanced in real life, will help you emotionally survive when winter comes again.

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7. “Some old wounds never truly heal and bleed again at the slightest word.” — George R.R. Martin

George R.R. Martin demonstrates a sophisticated understanding of trauma and horror in his series. He knows that there’s nothing like a crisis to bring to surface old pains that you thought you had successfully locked away, never to be unleashed again.

And now, with this pandemic, many have discovered that they are indeed, rebleeding from old wounds. This is a common phenomena with people who have experienced a lot of relational wounding and trauma.

Though it may not feel so good, this gives you an opportunity to heal.

8. “Death is so terribly final, while life is full of possibilities.” — Tyrion Lannister

There is nothing like a brush with mortality or painful loss to wake you up to living your life now! You may be limited by this pandemic in some ways, but you can find other strategies to be creative about it.

You can write down your goals and dreams that you want to work toward. Imagining what you want gets the creative process started.

This will help you start to feel alive inside, even if the actual pace of getting wherever it is you hope to arrive at, may be super-slow right now.

9. “We are only human and the gods have fashioned us for love. That is our greatest glory and our greatest tragedy.” — Aemon Targaryen

Most people want that sexual-spiritual connection with another. And while sheltering in place has helped couples that don’t get enough time together reconnect and rediscover that connection, it’s had the opposite effect on couples with more complicated attachments.

Many stay in unhappy relationships because they are afraid of the consequences of leaving. They fear they will end up alone. Many give up on finding their next great love after their last relationship ended, because of unhealed scars and fear.

There is nothing wrong with staying with someone to do your best to work things out, or even choosing to stay alone, if that’s what you really want. But if you feel that stirring in your soul that longs for more, the tragedy is not going for it.

10. “Every man must die, but first they must live.” — Ygritte

There’s nothing like a zombie apocalypse or a global pandemic to remind everyone that life is fragile and short. So, write down your goals and dreams, no matter how seemingly silly or unattainable you may think they are.

All things in life start with an idea. What are some of yours?

Take small action steps each and every day to move toward what you think you want. Be open to change along the way.

11. “Everything you did brought you where you are now. Home. Where you belong.” — Brandon Stark

Before diving into this parallel with the modern-day COVID-19 reality, it seems important to say that this series is filled with heroes and heroines with flaws, villains with moments of humanity, and morally-ambiguous characters.

They all seize opportunities to make their lives better, while trying to survive their cutthroat world. Is that really so different from today?

Many have been crippled by this pandemic and have experienced so much pain and loss. Many are ruminating over their past choices and all their inner dialogue of “what ifs.”

Yet, this pandemic, like the long night’s battle, offers everyone the opportunity to find gains from their losses through personal growth. One that allows people to find a new sense of purpose and passion in their life because of their pain and loss.

Just like on Game of Thrones, real life can be tragic, messy, heartbreaking and unfair at times.

And everyone makes mistakes. Everyone comes to hurt another at some time, whether they intended to or not.

And everyone has an opportunity right now to come home to themselves, take a personal inventory, make amends where appropriate, and then start anew.

If you can find the courage to look inside yourself with compassion and make peace with your “messy-ness,” no matter how messy it may seem, then those experiences can help you become the person you are actually meant to be.

Real self-actualization is possible right now, because of the challenges this pandemic has brought and will continue to bring.

The question is, when the ladder of chaos appears, do you have the courage to look the truth in the face, transcend your experience, and climb it?

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Maura Matarese, M.A., LMHC, R.Y.T. is a psychotherapist and author practicing in Sudbury, MA. If you are feeling parazlyed by loss and fear during this time, check out her book: Finding Hope In The Crisis: A Therapist’s Perspective On Love, Loss, And Courage.  If you are ready to move forward in your life and befriend your fear, pain and loss, check out her online course: Finding Hope After Heartbreak: Learn The Secret How To Start Feeling Better Now.