During the current pandemic and social distancing, what is normal is shifting. Where do you draw the line between necessary precautions and disabling anxiety? The funny thing about anxiety is its basis in uncertainty. The anxious mind needs to feel prepared and has a low tolerance for uncertainty. When we can lean into feared situations, and accept the uncertainty, our anxiety lessens and we learn to live with discomfort. Right now, it’s important to accept our lifestyle changes and the threat of COVID-19, while continuing to live our lives with purpose. If you find yourself checking multiple sites and reading the news obsessively, you may have crossed into “disabling anxiety” territory.
- Limit the daily amount of time you update yourself on the virus
- Engage in activities that give you pleasure, purpose, and healthy distraction
- Stay connected with others online or by phone/video chat
- Relax and practice mindfulness or calming exercises
- Keep exercising and get outside time every day
If your anxiety is more severe than what is typical for others right now, it might help to find a therapist to help you cope. Most therapists are now offering telemental health services (phone or video), which aligns with social distancing recommendations.
Take care of yourself in the face of uncertainty.