Emotional stress can be particularly painful and be challenging to deal with, it can take more of a toll than many other forms of stress.
If you’re living with high levels of emotional stress, you’re putting your entire well-being at risk. Stress can wreak havoc on your emotional equilibrium, as well as your physical health. It narrows your ability to think clearly, function effectively, and enjoy life.
As the events unfold surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and more recently around the #blacklivesmatter movement , it’s understandable that you might begin to feel increasing stress.
What can you do to take care of yourself and reduce emotional stress?
Take a depth breath and focus on what matters most right now
No matter how obvious this may seem and sound, it is vital for your health and mental well – being. Stress and anxiety can weaken your immune system, leaving you more vulnerable to viral infection. Search for a balance between prudent actions and panic.
Stay informed, follow the most recent guidelines and take practical precautions
Seek and share accurate information from authorized sources. Speculation and misinformation can fuel anxiety and cause fear and panic. Limit yourself to watching or reading information only from official and credible sources
Focus on the things that are within your control
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Make an action plan
Write down a schedule for the coming weeks. Having a clear plan will help you to stay focused. It keeps a sense of control and eliminate many potential distractors, interruptions as well as negative thoughts.
Limit your exposure to media and news coverage, especially social media
Constant monitoring of news updates and scrolling social media feeds about the coronavirus disease or can only intensify feelings of anxiety, worry and distress. It may also increase the feeling of lack of control and helplessness. Remember to take a break or even cut it out when you feel overwhelmed.
Learn more about breathing techniques, meditation, yoga and mindfulness to improve emotional stress
There are many free resources available on-line. Choose what resonates most with you and give it a try. Many studies show that practicing Mindfulness and meditation techniques can greatly help with stress relief and relaxation.
Talk with your children about the virus outbreak or what’s going on with #Blacklivesmatter
Remember that it is also important to help children cope with stress and protect them from any panic. Be supportive, patient and understanding. Give children extra care and attention. Reassure them that they are secure. Show them how to manage stress and anxiety.
Ask for professional mental support if too much emotional stress
Follow protection and prevention recommendations provided by legitimate sources and qualified health professionals. Look after yourself and your loved ones. Take responsible actions and try not to spread panic. However, if you, or someone you care about, are feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression, or anxiety, consider reaching out for support by a professional counsellor or peers. Help is available.
There is a lot that you and we as a community can do to cope with stress and anxiety in order to protect our mental health during this time of uncertainty.
You are not alone, I care and I hope that it will bring a better future to the world as a whole.