Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic- Part 4
There has been so much information bandied about in recent days, I thought I would try and make some sense of what's happening to us all.
Stress is our emotional and physical response to pressure. That pressure can arise from external factors including life events, illness (ourselves or someone close to us) living conditions, work, home and family, study, lack of some necessity, or the demands we place on ourselves. Even those events which we see as enjoyable can be stressful, such as holidays, moving home, starting a better job, pregnancy, parenthood, Christmas etc.
Identify your stressors - what's making you stressed?
Where am I when I'm feeling stressed? What am I doing? Who am I with? What helpful changes could I make? What is within my control? Even if there is little you can do about some situations, maybe making some small changes - in routine, in the way you handle things, doing things differently, taking time out, thinking about it in a different way, in getting help, seeking advice - could make all the difference.
Doing things differently
Do something different (to what you normally do)
Make time for yourself each day - relaxation, fun, enjoyment.
Create a healthy balance - allow time for activities which give you a sense of achievement, those that give a sense of closeness to others, and of a sense of enjoyment. When stressed, it's often the case that we spend more time doing things that help us achieve, but less of enjoyment and closeness to others.
Mindfulness - learn Mindful Breathing Focus your attention fully on another activity
Relaxation techniques - try lots and find one that works for you Put on some music - sing and dance along, or just listen attentively (use music that is likely to help you feel your desired emotion - avoid sad songs if you're depressed
Meditation or Prayer
Help others Be with others - contact a friend, visit family Talk to someone
Grounding techniques -
look around you, what do you see, hear, smell, sense? Hold a comforting object.
Physical exercise - walk, swim, go to the gym, cycle (take the stairs instead of the elevator, get off the bus a stop early)
Engage in a hobby or other interest - if you don't have one, find one! What have you enjoyed in the past? What have you sometimes thought about doing but not got around to?
Limit your responsibilities - it's okay to say no Write down your thoughts and feelings - get them out of your head. Just take one step at a time - don't plan too far ahead
Positive self-talk - encourage yourself, tell yourself: I can do this, I am strong and capable - find an affirmation that works for you (even if you don't believe it at first!). Write it down and memorize it for when you need it.
Do something creative - make a box of items that remind you to use the techniques that help, or put photos on paper, or write and decorate a list
Tell yourself: "This will pass, it's only temporary". When we're going through a tunnel and become fearful of being trapped, there's no point in stopping - we just have to carry on in order to reach the end of the tunnel.
Learn to communicate assertively (rather than passively or aggressively).
Eat a healthy balanced diet, with plenty of fruit and vegetables
Drink less caffeine and more water
Pamper yourself - do something you really enjoy, or do something relaxing.
Let's do this together!! Let's start to change the world with one kind act at a time. We can do this together!!!.