Worried about your well being during Covid 19? Here are nine concrete strategies to help manage stress during this challenging time.
Increase anxiety is common as we navigate Covid 19 and its broad consequences. Uncertainty about health outcomes, finances, childcare, travel and scheduled events are highly stressful. Action is one of the best treatments for anxiety. Share your concerns and problem solve with colleagues, family, and friends to plan coping steps.
Don’t overwork in this stressful time! Monitor yourself for excessive fatigue irritability, poor focus or marked anxiety. If we run on empty, we can’t effectively care for our families and loved ones.
Try mindful breathing several times a day. Take a moment for low and slow breaths during your natural day-to-day transitions such as getting out of bed, moving on to new tasks, dealing with kid tantrums, and sitting down or leaving the kitchen table. Breathing is calming and helps concentration.
As stress and demands increase, our health habits often take a hit. Bring your meals to work to maximize healthy eating, limit alcohol and THC use, prioritize exercise and get some sunlight!
Aerobic exercise is vital for stress reduction. Consider walking, biking, running, hiking, throwing a frisbee or ball as well as exercise and yoga videos if gyms and other exercise facilities close. A short aerobic walk or workout is better than nothing!
Reach out to family, friends, colleagues, and your favorite community groups for social contact. Call, Facetime, Zoom, Skype, or try Google Hangouts to reduce your isolation. Meaningful and fun connection, emotional support and healthy problem solving are vital to your health and well-being. Consider joining another family or friend for a meal by social media to reduce isolation for everyone.
Work with your team to take mini breaks. Even a 10-minute walk is calming and improves vital energy and focus. Plan down time at home. Exercise, distraction with a good book, movie, podcast, games with your family, and mindfulness techniques help us refuel physically and emotionally.
If you or your children are working from home, establish a consistent workspace to help with focus and productivity. Plan breaks as well.
If you have children or relatives who need care, let your team, friends and neighbors know asap. They may be in the same situation and relieved to develop a shared plan to help with family responsibilities.
Stay open and receptive to this constantly changing situation and know that in order to cope with it, you must accept it as the current norm.
Stay safe and stay healthy!