Anxiety is high these days. If you even watch five minutes of news on television, you might not sleep for days. Your news feed on your phone is filled with anxiety-inducing stories about COVID-19. And then your mother calls to tell you the bad news from wherever they live. It seems like an avalanche of coronavirus news surrounds us all and there is no way to escape it. And then you need to take care of your children. After all that, you need to find some mental energy to actually do your job in an unfamiliar economy. So, if you are feeling stressed, you are not alone. Almost everyone I have talked to over the past two weeks has had some type of major stressor on their mind. Gone are the days of “let’s meet for lunch,” replaced with “maybe we can do a Zoom meeting”?
I honestly believe we’ll all get through this. Since I’m not a doctor, I don’t know how long this will last. The economy will hopefully survive and find a way to get past this. But in the meantime? There’s a lot of anxiety out there. Jelena Kecmanovic is an adjunct professor of psychology at Georgetown University and provided Seven Strategies to help cope with anxiety.
Strategies to Cope with Coronavirus Anxiety
To help you deal with anxiety,
- Practice tolerating uncertainty (“The solution is to learn to gradually face uncertainty in daily life by easing back on certainty-seeking behaviors“);
- Tackle the anxiety paradox (“Allow your anxious thoughts, feelings and physical sensations to wash over you, accepting anxiety as an integral part of human experience“);
- Transcend existential anxiety (“Try connecting to your life’s purpose and sources of meaning“);
- Don’t underestimate human resiliency (“You are more resilient than you think“);
- Don’t get sucked into overestimating the threat (Limit “your exposure to coronavirus news to no more than 30 minutes per day“);
- Strengthen self-care (“Get adequate sleep, exercise regularly, practice mindfulness, spend time in nature and employ relaxation techniques when stressed“);
- Seek professional help if you need it.
These strategies seem like a good place to start if you are feeling overwhelmed.