If you have anxiety, working your way through the coronavirus pandemic can feel incredibly difficult. Worry becomes heightened due to increased concerns about your own health, the health of your loved ones, your dwindling finances, and more. Even if you’re doing what you can to stay afloat in all of these areas, the concern is still there.
What can you do to help ease your angst? Here are three strategies to consider.
Focus on What You CAN Control
So much of what is going on with COVID-19 is out of our control. Governmental regulations restrict what we’re able to do and we’re constantly being asked to change the way we live our lives to protect ourselves and others. This can increase anxiety because we aren’t able to make many decisions for ourselves.
Instead of constantly thinking about the things you can’t do, focus on the areas of your life where you still have control. For instance, you still get to decide whether you spend your days on the couch or if you’re going to be productive. You also have control over whether you’ll give in to your vices as a way to cope or if you use this time to build your inner strength and emerge from this pandemic a better person. Remember that, though some changes are mandatory, you’re still largely in charge of your own life.
Get Physically Active
When you’re told to “stay at home,” it’s easy to use this as permission to sit on the couch all day and do nothing. The problem with this approach is, if you wrestle with anxiety, too much time spent doing nothing gives your mind the ability to go into overdrive. Plus, when you’re sedentary, anxious energy builds up and has nowhere to go.
Combat both of these issues by engaging in some type of physical activity every single day. Hop on the treadmill that has been taking up a corner of your room. Get outside and walk, work on your yard, or go for a bike ride. These things take your mind off of COVID-19 while releasing feel-good hormones that can boost your mood at the same time.
Take Advantage of Technology
Just because we can’t physically be next to other people right now doesn’t mean that we have to work through our anxiousness alone. There are still many great technologies available that enable us to keep in touch with family and friends, or to meet with our mental health team.
If you’re feeling anxious, pick up the phone and call someone you trust. Video platforms are available as well and can make you feel less isolated. Many mental health professionals offer virtual appointments as well so you can get help even though you can’t see them in person.
Increased anxiety during difficult times is to be expected. But that doesn’t mean that you have to live in an elevated state until the pandemic is over. Hopefully these three things will help!