March 20: How to support your mental health, despite coronavirus anxieties

Your mental health is just as important to us as your physical well-being. Addressing the effect that stress and anxiety have on your mental state during this fearful time is essential. While it’s important to stay up to date on the global situation, constant consumption of media can leave you feeling even more helpless and scared. You can maintain peace in your life. Stay present, care for your total health, and take every day as it comes.

Here are a few actionable everyday tips to nurture your mental well-being:

Focus on what you can control – It’s perfectly natural to feel a bit unsettled when so much around you seems out of your control. Instead, focus on the things you can control. Develop a personal action plan. Practice good hygiene and follow the CDC recommendations. Most importantly, pay attention to thoughts that increase anxiety and shift your focus.

Limit media influence – While it’s important to stay informed, it’s also important you don’t allow yourself to become overwhelmed with anxiety-provoking news every minute of the day. Limit your media intake to healthy amounts.

Tackle your anxiety by acknowledging it – It may seem contradictory, but often, the more you try not to feel anxious, the more likely it is that your anxiety will increase. When anxious feelings come, acknowledge and describe them. Allowing yourself to feel uncomfortable will reduce anxiety overtime.

Practice self-care – Get plenty of sleep. Eat a well-balanced diet. Practice mindfulness. Spend time outdoors. Find ways to relax when stress levels increase. Simply taking care of yourself is the best way to keep your immune system at its best.

Don’t be afraid to seek professional help – If you experience mental health symptoms that continue to interfere with daily life, seek the assistance of professional help. You are not alone, and knowing resources are available for you to turn to is offers peace of mind.

 

Sources:

https://www.who.int/docs/default-source/coronaviruse/coping-with-stress.pdf?sfvrsn=9845bc3a_2
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/managing-stress-anxiety.html
https://www.nimh.nih.gov/about/director/messages/2020/coping-with-coronavirus-managing-stress-fear-and-anxiety.shtml