If you're feeling more anxious and stressed lately due to the COVID-19, it's perfectly understandable. With all the changes with the stock market, the economy, jobs and workplaces, and the fear friends and family might become sick, anxiety is at an all-time high.
Coping With Stress During a Pandemic
Stress is a normal part of life, but too much of it can be hard on you emotionally and physically. If the recent events surrounding the pandemic are making you more anxious than usual, you can do things to control your stress. Try not to watch the news, other than important announcements, and find positive outlets to engage in. The worst thing you can do is do nothing and let yourself become more stressed and at higher risk of getting sick and/or depressed. Illness is one of life's most stressful events.
Recognizing the Signs of Stress
Sometimes the effects of stress can creep up on us before we realize it, especially when we're distracted dealing with current events. Recognizing things that trigger stress and how your body reacts are an important part of learning how to alleviate anxiety when it hits. This is especially important if you are already dealing with physical illnesses such as heart problems, cancer, and other conditions that leave your immune system compromised.
Positive Stress Outlets
There are lots of small stress relieving things you can do during the day to alleviate stress. Some common options are going out and taking a walk, playing and cuddling with pets, and making arts and crafts by yourself or with your family and friends. Even watching movies that will make you cry can be a way of releasing stress. It may be hard at first to take actions that seem almost frivolous, but simply the act of doing something can help to eventually make you feel better. Other ways to manage and reduce stress in your life include:
- Practice positive management that includes journaling, exercise, and following proper nutritional guidelines.
- Utilize tools like anti-stress coloring pages or stress balls.
- Engage in physical activities like gardening, biking, or dance.
- Try deep breathing techniques in order to calm yourself.
You also should not hesitate to contact a mental health professional or your medical care provider for more advice if you still feel enough anxiety to impair your daily life.
Don't Let COVID-19 Stress Overwhelm You
Stress can cause people's immune systems to break down and leave them more susceptible to illness, and they need to stay healthy to avoid catching coronavirus and passing it on to others. Learning how to recognize when you're stressed and finding coping strategies that work for you is essential to getting through this current crisis with a healthy mind, body and spirit.