As someone with high anxiety and taking multiple medications to combat it, my nerves have been fried overall the coronavirus virus news and updates that the news outlets and social media thrust in our faces. Yes, we need to be informed. Yes, we need to be prepared in case our area goes under quarantine status. No, we do not need to freak out to the point we make ourselves sick.
Here are some ways I’m doing self-care during this stressful time in our global economy.
1. Stay off social media
Social media is full of misinformation. Some people are blowing this pandemic off while others are spreading misinformation and making it seem worse than it is. Both are bad for your mental health. You need good, clean information that hasn’t been tainted by someone’s opinion. The question is where to get it? The CDC is my choice on the information highway at the moment. They even have an article on how to talk to kids about the current situation.
2. Prepare like you will be quarantined
Even if the likelihood of you being quarantined is low, you may know someone who has a higher risk. Prepare for yourself and then you will have things to share if it comes down to it. Either way, being prepared is one way to lower anxiety levels.
3. Pick up a happy book
Stay away from the pandemic- and civilization-under-attack-type books. Pick up something you know will end happily or at least has a happy premise. See my post 10 Books To Read During a Pandemic for ideas.
4. Try a new hobby
Put your mind to good use and learn something new. Take an online course. (I highly suggest MasterClass.)
5. Start a journal
I have a video journal I keep on my computer that I record new “episodes” of every time I need to vent verbally. It helps me more than writing down my thoughts sometimes. I just activate my front-facing camera on my MacBook Pro and talk into the camera. Easy. If you don’t have a webcam, use your phone and talk to yourself. If video journaling is not your idea of fun, write in a journal. Either way, get your thoughts out and you will feel a little better.
6. Clean something
I always find solace in cleaning or organizing. I think I missed my true calling of being a professional organizer. Get out the duster or the laundry and get to it. Your mind will stay busy and you will have a cleaner living environment to boot.
7. Spend time with family
If you are stuck with the kids at home or the spouse because their office is closed, turn on Disney+ and catch up on Jeff Goldblum’s show, The World According to Jeff Goldblum. (I highly recommend the coffee and makeup episodes.) You can also dust off one of those board games in the closet and play a few rounds.
8. Take a nap
9. Finish that level in Mario or Zelda
I have I don’t know how many games I’ve dropped because a level got too hard. Well, guess what? Now is the time to distract your brain and challenge it to finish those levels. If you have to, go online and find walkthroughs or cheat codes. I won’t tell.
10. Focus on the things in your life you can control
There is a therapy tool called the “Circle of Control” created by Stephen Covey. It’s very useful to use to figure out what you can control, influence, and what is just a concern (something you can’t really do anything about).