As if life weren’t already challenging enough to deal with, the coronavirus reared its ugly head and wreaked havoc on everything. Government officials implemented shelter in place and social distancing mandates, non-essential businesses were temporarily closed, schools transitioned to virtual learning, and many people lost their jobs. Though things seemed to get better this summer with the loosening of restrictions, recent spikes in new cases and hospitalizations have once again sparked a frenzy. Whether you previously suffered from or not, this anxiety during uncertain times is sure to heighten anyone’s fears.
How do you keep yourself and those you care about from contracting the coronavirus? How long will you be able to provide financially? More importantly, will you be able to adapt to the new normal?
While all these fears are warranted, allowing them to fester can result in mental health problems or worsening anxiety during uncertain times. Encountering such issues makes it worse for you to weather this storm. As such, you must find ways to cope. Continue reading to learn how.
Take a Break From the Media
There is a ton of content on the coronavirus pandemic right now. Though it’s essential to stay informed, too much exposure can exacerbate your anxiety during uncertain times. Try listening to reputable news sites no more than 30 minutes to an hour each day. Spend the rest of your day doing more productive things.
Write It Down
Journaling is an effective way to get those anxious feelings out of your head. It’s a safe space for you to express yourself without feeling judged. Your journal can also be an excellent way to identify your triggers and further improve your anxiety. Spend a few minutes each day writing how you’re feeling amid the pandemic to ease emotional pressures.
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Devise a Plan
For many people, the uncertainty of the future amid the pandemic causes increased anxiety. Though you can’t control everything, devising a plan for your future can put your mind at ease. For example, if you’re worried about finances, developing a budget, increasing your savings, reducing your expenses, and coming up with multiple streams of income can put your worrying to rest.
Do Things You Enjoy
The many changes amid the pandemic may have altered the activities you can participate in, but that doesn’t mean you have to sit at home and sulk all day. Find ways to lift your spirits and ease your fears by engaging in things you enjoy. You can take a walk through a park, read a book, pick up a new hobby, take an online course, or spend time with loved ones via video chat or small gatherings (as long as you’re safe).
Talk to Someone
If you’ve tried the above ideas and still feel overwhelmed by these uncertain times, talking to someone can help. You can vent to your friends or a close relative regularly. If that’s not an option, you can also consult with a licensed therapist. They are trained to not only listen to your deepest fears but are skilled in helping you to use healthy coping mechanisms and strategies to get past it. If necessary, your therapist can prescribe medication, recommend support groups, or refer you for other treatment options to get your anxiety under control.
The truth is, these are crazy times we’re dealing with. Though the future is uncertain, allowing yourself to succumb to your negative emotions will only make matters worse. The best thing you can do for yourself and your family is to learn how to prevent your feelings from getting the best of you as this chaos unfolds. The tips provided above are effective ways to cope and continue living a happy and healthy life.