To say that COVID-19 has changed everyone’s lives in some way would be an understatement.
Some people have lost jobs. Others have lost loved ones. You might be working remotely for the first time or trying to help your child with e-learning while feeling lost and overwhelmed.
On top of that, we still aren’t out of the woods when it comes to this pandemic. There have been new waves of illness across the country, with case numbers skyrocketing in several states.
With a vaccine on the horizon, people are starting to feel a bit hopeful — as though there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Nothing will change overnight, and some experts predict we still haven’t seen the worst of this virus.
All of that is enough to make anyone anxious. Some studies have suggested that the long-term mental health effects of this pandemic could be catastrophic. If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed and anxious about it for far too long, you’re not alone. But, you can also put strategies in place to help you cope.
1. Stay Connected
When you’re anxious, it’s easy to close yourself off and let those worried thoughts take over. That’s one of the worst things you can do, especially in a time when it’s so easy to feel disconnected.
If you feel those anxious thoughts starting to creep in, call a friend or family member. FaceTime them, get on a Zoom call or even send a text message. Any way you can feel connected to the people you love will help you manage anxiety every day.
2. Share Your Concerns
It’s okay to speak up about your worries with people you trust. The chances are, there are people in your life who share those worries. Opening up about how you’re feeling will not only help you, but it may help them to feel justified in the way they’re feeling, too.
Speaking up will also help you not feel so alone while bottling up your concerns can be dangerous.
3. Be Prepared
One of the best ways to alleviate your worries is to feel confident in your preparedness. By doing all of the right things to keep yourself and your loved ones protected from COVID-19, you can take comfort in knowing your chances of contracting the illness are slim.
You can also take pride in the fact that you’re doing your part to stop the spread and get life back to normal. The more prepared you feel, the less likely you are to worry.
4. Take Care of Yourself
Mental health and physical health often go hand-in-hand. If you aren’t taking the time to take care of yourself physically, it can exacerbate your feelings of anxiety.
Now, more than ever, paying attention to your health is essential. So, make sure you’re eating right, getting enough sleep, exercising, and taking precautions to keep yourself safe. You might be surprised at how much physical self-care can positively impact your worried or anxious thoughts.
5. Be More Mindful
Anxiety is often fueled by thoughts of the future and things you can’t control. It’s easy to feel scared about this pandemic when new information seems to be coming out regularly.
While you might be tempted to think about how the virus will continue to wreak havoc, try focusing on the present instead. Be mindful of the moment you’re in. Take deep, calming breaths and focus on the way your body feels as you take them. Thoughts will continue to come, but you can choose to let them go and stay present.
If you’re still struggling with anxiety because of COVID-19, it’s never a bad idea to talk to a professional. Understand that you’re certainly not alone in the way you’re feeling, and there is no shame in being anxious about the state of the world.
Feel free to contact us for more information or more help to manage your daily anxiety.