Managing Anxiety In A Pandemic - Be Kind To Your Mind
Managing anxiety through a pandemic - Be kind to your mind!
Are you feeling anxious for the first time? Is your mind constantly rehashing different scenarios of what the future looks like? Are you experiencing emotional highs and lows?
This is normal!!!
During a pandemic, it is normal to feel feelings of fear, anxiety, sadness, and uncertainty. Past pandemics have taught us that people can experience mental health problems for the first time during a pandemic.
Stress results from any change you must adapt to. The planet has had to adapt in most areas of life so it is normal for us to feel high levels of fear and anxiety.
Being proactive about your mental health can help to keep both your mind and body in good shape.
Stress and Anxiety Management.
The most effective piece of information I have received about anxiety is that it is your body's reaction to something you fear. Tracking when your anxiety flares up will help you learn what your triggers are and support you in managing these unwanted feelings.
Stress management is most effective when you make it part of your daily lifestyle. Introducing some of the below will support you now and strengthen your resilience to other stressful life events.
Inhale! Exhale! - Deep breathing can help lessen stress and anxiety. By breathing slower and more deeply from your stomach, you signal your nervous system to calm down. Deep breathing takes practice—it won’t be immediately helpful. Trying different breathing patterns, being mindful, and having peer support can help improve your deep breathing practice.
Practice Good Self Care- Eating a balanced diet, getting plenty of sleep, and exercise are all key to helping you stay as physically and psychologically healthy as possible during stressful times. If you exercise regularly, it can reduce your stress and symptoms of mental health conditions like anxiety, and help with recovery from mental health issues.
Good self-care also keeps your immune system robust.
Limit Screen Time - Social Media can be a great thing! Because of Social Media platforms we have felt socially connected to people when we have been physically distant. But, too much screen time can be damaging to your mental health as it creates a false sense of reality and fuels our own insecurities of “not doing enough”,”not looking good enough”, or “not being good enough”. Too much screen time also exposes us to inaccurate content that can cause anxiety.
Meditation - We have heard it all before but never before have we needed to help our mind with stressful thoughts. Did you know it only takes 9 minutes of meditation to rewire your brain? These 9 minutes can not only be helpful in managing stress but it can also be life-transforming. Meditation has been shown to reduce blood pressure, slow the heart rate, reduce cortisol levels, reduce inflammation, and one of my favorites….it slows down the aging process!
Talking - If your mental health is being impacted by the stress of the pandemic, then you may want to seek professional help. Talking helps take the feelings out from inside of yourself, it helps you to process them. It’s kind of like the pressure cooker analogy: If you don’t open a lid periodically, the steam can build up and cause you to feel even more stressed.
A licensed mental health professional can help you manage your fears while also empowering you to make the best decisions for you and your family.
Face-to-face services are limited at the moment because of the coronavirus outbreak. But a number of services are providing online and phone services.
A link to these services is below and this includes:
- online counselling and support
- phone support
- text support
Irish Mental Health Support Services
Remember, not all stress is bad. In fact, some stress is essential to survive. But it is how you respond to events that determine the impact the stress will have on you.
Principle are trying to guide our candidates and clients through this stressful time as best we can. If you need support with tips for your CV or tips for interviewing we are happy to help you in any way we can!