We are currently facing one of the most challenging times in our life – a war against an enemy we can’t see. As a human, it’s normal to feel anxious or stress in times like this because we know that if we are not careful, something terrible can happen. The anxiety of getting infected, getting sick or dying serves as a motivation for us to stay at home and be vigilant.
However, even after following necessary protective measures, some things will keep bothering us, like the fear of uncertainty and the fear brought by news and posts we see online.
To protect our mental health, here are some things we can do to relieve or manage our stress and anxiety during this coronavirus pandemic.
Take a break from the news and social media if it gets overwhelming.
Now that we are facing a global pandemic, it’s common to see news about people suffering, death, economic crisis, and other negative stuff. Because of this, we often feel helpless and pessimistic.
Keeping yourself updated on what’s happening around you is good, but if you start to become immensely absorbed by negativity, don’t hesitate to take a break.
Worrying or stressing about everything that you see on the news and social media will not change anything. It will only heighten stress and anxiety.
So, take a break from reading news and do something else that will make you feel relax and better.
Connect with your family and friends.
We are social creatures by nature, so even if we are practicing physical distancing, we need to make time and connect with our family and friends.
Moreover, socializing can reduce stress and anxiety. Especially during tough times, being able to talk to your friends and family play an essential role in keeping your sanity.
If you are at home with your family, set aside some time to talk to them or do something like watch movies, eat meals or do some chores together.
If your loved one is away from you, like your friends, don’t forget to send them a message or call them.
You’ll feel better after doing so.
Let go of what you can’t control.
You cannot control everything that is happening around you. No matter how much you stress yourself or how much you worry about the issues of the world, you can’t solve everything.
I’m not saying that you should stop caring, but you should be aware that as a human, you can only do so much.
Just like in our situation right now, we don’t have the power to stop people from going outside, in halting the spread of the virus, and in helping every poor people in our country, but we can do our part, and we can influence others to do theirs.
So when you feel like you’re stressing yourself again and you’re feeling helpless in the world’s situation, give yourself time to step back. If it’s something you can control, act on it. If it isn’t, let it go.
Remember that it’s not only the virus that can kill you, but by worrying too much and stressing yourself of the things you can’t control, you are posing a threat to your health.
Write down and assess all your worries and fears.
The thing about pandemics is that we don’t know until when it will continue. It affects not only our health but also other aspects of our life – our time, work, and future. If all of these worries are trapped inside our brain, they will continue to bring us stress and anxiety.
The best way to deal with them is to write and assess. Write down all of the fears that you have and see if you can do something to solve it. If it is not something you can solve, then the best thing to do is to accept and let it go.
Stay in the present moment and avoid making assumptions.
One of the reasons why our stress and anxiety double during these challenging times is that we create scenarios in our minds. But no one can foresee what will happen, no matter how much we think about it.
Seize this present moment. Do what you can with the time you have. This approach is better than worrying about a future that is not guaranteed to any of us.
Extend help or share something positive.
Usually, when we extend our help to others, we feel happier. We feel that there is still something we can do. So if you have some extra money and you want to donate, then go for it!
But help doesn’t always need to be monetary, I’ve seen some Facebook groups sharing tips and pieces of advice about cooking, I’ve seen creators sharing free resources and ideas, and I’ve seen people posting positive quotes and some good news.
You can share what you know or share something good. It goes a long way.
Look for things you can be grateful for.
I know this might sound silly, but if you can still read this blog or if you still have time to do something you want, I hope you’ll realize how lucky and blessed you are.
During these tough times, you need to focus on counting your blessings. Focus on what you have and not what you’re missing. If you can hug your parents, you can work, and you can still breathe, don’t forget to be grateful.
Focusing on the good things in times like this can ease your heart and mind.
You should never neglect your mental health, especially during these challenging times.
There is still hope; I’m very positive that we will find the cure, that we will be able to surpass this pandemic. But what we can do now is stay home, comply with the rules, and manage our stress and anxiety so it wouldn’t affect our health.
What are you are doing right now to manage your stress and anxiety? Feel free to share it below. I would love to hear from you! Please stay safe.