4 ways to manage your anxiety around COVID-19
Anxiety disorders are often linked to difficulty in dealing with uncertainty. The year 2020 so far has been full of uncertainty, so if you are struggling with anxious feelings or struggling to manage your disorder, we are here to help.
It’s important to understand that anxiety is a normal reaction to uncertainty and a perceived threat; most people would have felt anxious at some point in their life, especially the last year. When situations become threatened, for example, losing a job, or not affording to pay bills, or seeing someone's health deteriorating, it can cause a significant emotional strain on our mind and body. Feeling anxious about these uncertain factors can make you feel a bit hopeless and powerless, but you can learn to understand these emotions and respond to them more positively.
Do you know that an estimated 275 million people suffer from anxiety disorders across the world? That's around 4% of the global population.
When it comes to COVID-19 and the global pandemic, we must stay aware of the dangers, but not to indulge too much in them, which can cause significant problems to our day to day lives. A lot of things have changed, quite drastically since the announcement of the first lockdown back in March, situations which would quickly cause someone's anxiety and mental health to spiral. It’s normal to be struggling during a global pandemic. It’s particularly difficult now as we started to see the light at the end of the COVID tunnel, as places began to reopen and we were reunited with family and friends. For that to then change again, to find ourselves isolated and often bored, it's no surprise that many feel the emotional and psychological burden. But there are ways to manage your mental health during this pandemic; there is hope, whatever disorder or emotional issue you are facing.
Here’s 4 ways you can manage your anxiety around COVID-19:
1. Focus on what you can control
- Avoid unnecessary shopping and travel
- Avoid crowds and gatherings
- Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face too much
- Make sleep a priority, it helps support your immune system
- Follow all recommendations from health authorities
2. Stay connected
- Organise calls or FaceTime catch-ups with friends and family
- Stay up to date with others online like social media, but don’t spend too much time aimlessly scrolling
- Try to steer conversations being solely about the Coronavirus
3. Monitor media intake
- Be aware of the spread of fake news, these are just people scaremongering
- Identify what your limit is when it comes to watching the news, as it can increase anxiety levels if too much negative information is absorbed
4. Manage your “What if’s”
- Identify if you are using any unhelpful thinking styles, e.g. assuming and jumping to conclusions. Our minds are wired to attract negatives, but they aren’t always realistic.
- Consume information only from trusted sources; try not to engage in people’s strong opinions on the matter if it makes you uncomfortable.
- Try and be more in the present, focus on your surroundings and your sensations, grounding yourself will bring you away from futuristic worries.
If you are struggling with your mental health as a result of the Coronavirus, we are here to help. CBT is the treatment of choice for anxiety, depression and a range of psychological problems. Our therapists are all BABCP accredited, meaning you will receive the highest standard of CBT possible.
We have flexible online and remote therapy options to help get you back on track. Our iCBT programme has a dedicated module for COVID-19, with a range of digital tools focussing on specific concerns.
Please do not hesitate to contact us on 0203 795 8718 if you want to discuss
any of these options in more detail.
Real therapy. Real results.