The news about COVID-19 and how it took many lives continue to dominate the headlines here and abroad. Businesses were forced to temporarily close, and people were confined at their own homes to slow the spread of the virus.
According to Dr. Kelly Vincent, a licensed Clinical Psychologist in Encinitas, California, a pandemic such as the one being experienced right now often ignite fear, anxiety, and erratic behavior. He also pointed out that an individual with pre-existing mental illness or history with anxiety and depression can often worsen and intensify.
However, even without pre-existing mental conditions, you can also experience stress or anxiety. Your life was put on standstill and the feeling of uncertainty can take a toll on your mental health.
Here are ways to reduce and cope up with stress:
- Create a daily schedule/routine for you and your family.
- Take care of your body. Exercising regularly, eating healthy, staying hydrated and getting plenty of sleep are key.
- Take this opportunity to learn new skills such as cooking, baking or gardening, or enroll in free online courses to keep your mind engaged.
- Strengthen your bond with your family by doing activities together like working out, watching movies, dancing or singing.
- Minimize watching or listening to news stories via television and all forms of social media. Hearing news related to the ill effect of COVID-19 repeatedly can be upsetting. Should you need to seek information, carefully choose sources to ensure accuracy.
- If you feel like you are experiencing anxiety, don’t hesitate to speak to a friend or seek medical help.
Remember that the emotions you are experiencing is normal relative to the difficult circumstances now. Learn to accept and adapt to this hopefully temporary situation, focus on the future, and stay positive.