It is normal to feel stress, anxiety, grief, and worry during a pandemic, says Anamika Yaduvanshi, as she offers tips to manage this stress
The world is collapsing around us. People are struggling with this monster called Covid-19. But, there is a bigger demon within us that is killing us with each passing day. That demon is stress, depression and anxiety. Though these are uncertain times and shall pass, the impact that the pandemic is going to have will be severe.
With time, wounds will heal, but stress, anxiety and depression need timely and regular attention. Only by strengthening yourself will you be able to strengthen others. If not, you would face issues like feelings of concern, anger, sadness, worry, numbness, or frustration. Also, you will face difficulty in concentrating and sleeping. Physical reactions like aches, or chronic health issues will crop up. A few ways to help yourself, and others manage stress:
Limit those stories: Take breaks from observation, reading, or being attentive to news stories, as well as those on social media. It’s smart to be aware, however, hearing about the pandemic every time can create a sense of disturbance. Think about limiting news to merely a few times every day and disconnecting from phone, TV, and laptop screens for a short while.
Take out some Me-Time: Take care of your body. It is the one which needs special care and attention. Ensure proper intake of liquids and nutritious food.
Say no to negativity: Let go of negative thoughts by taking deep breaths, stretching, or meditation.
Take sound sleep: Don’t compromise on sleep and take proper naps. If you are facing trouble sleeping, then do some chanting or simply wash your hands and feet. This helps with sound sleep. Avoid the consumption of excessive alcohol, tobacco, and or any other drug as it can create hallucinations.
Beat the buzz: Connect with others via phone or text and express your feelings to them. This will help you to calm your mind and you will feel relaxed.
Breathing can help: Make time for deep breathing exercise. It brings instant relief. Inhale through the nostrils slowly and hold the breath till the count of two. Then exhale through your mouth on the count of four. Repeat this exercise for at least five times.
Cheat your mind: Let the thought of the future, not destroy your present. Stop worrying about what the future holds and stick to what is going on now. This will make your mind stable and will also help you to ease out anxiety. For this follow this simple experiment.
Stand quietly at a peaceful place and just imagine of:
- Five things you can see
- Four things you can feel
- Three things you can hear
- Two things you can smell
- One thing you can taste
Be grateful for what you have: One of the powerful ways to get rid of negative thoughts is to be grateful for whatever you have, even if small. You will see a change in yourself. For this, you can pen down all the possible things that you own.
Set a routine: A routine can be a huge part of what keeps us sane in traditional times. So, if your routine has been pushed due to all these things going on, then bring it back to normal. Whatever your state of affairs, taking care of yourself is vital throughout these times of disruption. Don’t let the anxiety, stress and depression overpower you and your thoughts. Be strong and fight it with full strength.
The writer is a life coach and motivational healer