Managing Stress & Anxiety during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic
The novel corona virus is identified as a global pandemic by World Health Organization and is causing havoc in the lives of the people all across the world. It can be said that the entire world has come to a halt, as many nations have restored to lockdowns to lessen the spread of this viral disease. The standards of living of people are deteriorating, world economies are crashing, people are bound to be in isolation, no wonder the entire world has come to a stand-still. The fatality rate caused by COVID-19 virus is increasing day-by-day with no confirmation of the invention of any vaccine yet.
Yes, Pandemics can be very stressful. They not only affect people physically but can also affect their mental health leading to conditions like stress, fear, anxiety or depression. It can take a toll on person’s mental health; however, it is necessary for people cope up with these conditions to not fall as victim to this dangerous situation. Always remember, if your mind is at peace, you can overcome any mental conflict.
Here are some useful tips that will help you in managing your mental health during this stressful situation:
In the midst of this stressful times it is important to understand the actuality and reality of the situation. It is extremely necessary to understand the impact corona virus has created in your community. Many people are still unaware of the gravity of the situation, and those who are aware are likely to overthink the situation resulting into panic. At such times, try to stay calm and understand the realistic situation so that you can act accordingly.
Make sure that you check news and stay informed, but don’t obsess over checking the news constantly. Doing so is going to add to the stress resulting in unhealthy mental conditions. There is a lot of misinformation circulating in the news, so make sure that you listen to the information from trusted sources like WHO or CDC. Monitoring the news regularly may cause dread and panic fuelling your anxiety. Try to get an insight about the condition of your locality from local health authorities so that you can take the necessary precautions to avoid the spread of the virus.
Although you can’t be physically in touch with people, it is necessary to stay connected during this critical situation. Living in isolation can affect our mental health causing a feeling of loneliness or stress. We all know that meeting people physical is restricted, so make sure that you regularly talk with your family and friends over a call. You can schedule video-calls or for having face-to-face conversation. It is necessary to understand that a good laugh with a loved one can relieve all your stress. Try playing online as well as offline games, share stories via texts and try to stay connected with your loved ones as much as possible.
It is habitual of any person to think about what might happen next in such massive pandemic. Questions like ‘What if I have Corona virus?’, ‘What if I am the next victim?’ and 1000 different questions are bound to cross one’s mind leading to panic and distraught. To relive yourself from these questions, make sure you follow the basic guidelines issued to avoid corona virus. Make sure that you wash your hands regularly, cover your face while sneezing, avoid touching your face and follow social-distancing. Following these rules will definitely calm your uncertainties and reduce your personal risk of getting caught with the virus.
It is vital to take a moment from your schedule to check up on yourself. Before sleeping make sure that you ask yourself how hard were you on yourself today. Take things easy rather than stressing. Make sure you drink lots of water, exercise, and get plenty of sleep. Get out in the nature and enjoy the sun’s company, if possible. You can also start meditating or doing yoga, which will definitely help you relive your stress. Remember if you are kind to yourself, you will make yourself happy.
Staying in isolation and practicing social-distancing can be stressful at times, making you feel lonely or alone. The best way to turn this situation positive and productive is by entertaining yourself. You can do so by indulging yourself in some hobby that you enjoy. This isolation period can be your time to discover your hidden talents. You can enrol yourself for an online class of the subject you always wanted to learn but never got time. Covert this time into a constructive and productive ‘me-time’ that you will cherish for life.
We all know how difficult and tiring this situation is for everyone, so helping others will make you feel useful and better about yourself. If you are stepping out of the house to buy groceries, you can do the same for the elderly people in your neighbourhood. Reach out to others in need and be a positive influence for people who are stressed. A restless mind finds peace by helping others.
Unnecessary stress exacerbates anxiety and depression. Following simple steps like these will help you to be calm and composed in such difficult times and help you gain perspective in this changing environment. If you think you cannot cope up with anxiety or stress on your own, seek medical help.