With tens of millions of people suddenly losing their jobs and burdened with endless worrying about the contagion, is it any wonder you may be stressed out.
Even if you’re not directly affected at this point, you may be worried about how the world will return to normal after the event has passed.
Here are a few tips for dealing with stress during this highly unusual time.
If you have lost your job (and your social life), you’re probably experiencing a high level of stress. But, being super productive at home may not be the best way to escape facing reality – at least initially.
Although pushing yourself to maximum may initially seem like a useful distraction to keep yourself from completely derailing, over time, you’re probably going only to increase your levels of anxiety and lose your motivation.
Try offloading a bit. You need to give yourself a break and time to process all the grief.
Don’t dwell on not functioning at maximum capacity. The time will come again when you’ll need to pedal hard. Motivation will return.
Is someone close to you going to get sick? Will you get a job after this crisis is over? Family members, Friends, and Finances are the three most common things you’re most likely worrying about as a result of this crisis.
But, all that worrying has a detrimental effect on your immune system, so it doesn’t help.
Worrying is not something that you can stop, but here is a measure you can take to manage it better. Compartmentalize worrying into a block of time (say 30 minutes of your day) and write down your feelings about things that concern you. Then come up with some reasonable solutions and write them down as well. For instance, if you’re concerned about getting a job in the same sector as before, you may want to write down a list of closely associated industries that could use your skills. Then, start doing some research. You’ll instantly feel a lot more calm and motivated.
I’ve mentioned this recently in a previous post, and I believe this to be, sadly, one of the main culprits of stress. The News! There’s only one news, it’s ubiquitous, and it’s is a huge motivation killer. It seems as if almost everything presented is negative and sad. This is a great stress inducer.
Shift Your Attention
It’s one thing to try and keep updated on current events by watching the news; however, it’s impacts are not innocuous.
The events that are happening are beyond our control and may seem terrifying, so shift your attention to those things that you can control. Do your part by maintaining social distancing and create new activities that you can manage. For instance, there are many new things you can learn on YouTube. I’ve personally found many instructional videos helping improve my tennis.
Are you waking up in the middle of the night for no apparent reason, feeling restless with your eyes wide open? Have you just had a bad day, or are you experiencing anxiety?
Release Your Emotions
Anxiety is the persistent feeling of worry, so it’s essential to assess your emotions. Talk to friends and family members about what you’re going through and practice activities that are relaxing and restorative, especially before bed. I.e., taking a hot shower, listening to music, or reading a book.
These are trying times, and you may be thinking that things are only going to get worse. This can create a tremendous amount of stress and frustration.
Since none of us really know how this is all going to end, we need to be supportive of one another and express gratitude for all the things that we do have.
Until Next Time.
Dr. Randy Simor