The COVID-19 crisis can be stressful for people across the world. Fear and anxiety about the disease and how everyday life has been and will be affected can be overwhelming for adults and children. With the flow of news and social media updates, it can be difficult to manage high stress levels, fear, and anxiety.
Coping with stress in a healthy way can allow us to treat ourselves and our community with kindness and support. Everyone handles stress differently and it is important to understand a few simple ways to take care of yourself and handle stress right now.
Reach Out to Your Community
It is easy to feel alone or removed from others when sheltering-at-home and social distancing. Now is the best time to reach out to your network and have friendly conversations about other topics.
Make a habit of checking in with your community, team, and loved ones during the pandemic. Video chat services like FaceTime, Google Duo, and Zoom are great ways to virtually connect with friends and business colleagues. Make your hangouts even more unforgettable with fun and free apps:
- Houseparty: A social networking service that enables group video chatting and virtual games
- Netflix Party: Chrome browser extension that syncs a Netflix session with a remote group.
- Mario Kart Tour: Smartphone game with multiplayer option for iOS and Android.
Take Care of Your Body
Exercise is a great stress-reducing activity to practice while stay-at-home orders are continuing. Many companies are offering free or discounted workout videos via Zoom, Instagram/Facebook Lives, and on YouTube.
Other activities to relieve stress include deep breathing, meditating, and stretching. Be sure you’re getting plenty of sleep and eat a well-rounded diet as well.
Limit Exposure to News and Social Media Outlets
It is important to stay up to date with news outlets and ensure you are aware of the status of the pandemic. But it can easily be overwhelming and make stress and anxiety worse. Allow yourself time to unplug, especially before you go to bed.
Give yourself some time to refrain from social media outlets, news media, and unreliable sources. Limit your news outlets to ensure you are not overwhelmed by information and news content.
Take Care of Your Emotional Health
It is natural to feel overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, and lonely during COVID-19. Everyone reacts differently and it is important to understand that your needs and feelings will change over time. Understand and accept how you feel and ensure that you are doing what is right for you personally. If you feel overwhelmed, we suggest you reach out to mental health professionals.
For information on how to cope with disasters and emotional health, please review the CDC’s guide.