Over the past few months, depression and anxiety statistics have skyrocketed and people across the globe are finding it harder and harder to cope. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic isn’t even the only underlying cause of all this struggle. Day-to-day life seems to be getting more difficult to deal with and many people lack the tools to help them do so. The pressure to constantly be performing at our best, alarming crime rates, various social issues, financial strain, not being able to see the ones we love – it can all be a bit much to handle. This article some ways in which to manage anxiety in various situations, so keep reading if you feel like you may need a little help.
Crime is a major issue all over the world and it’s natural to feel uneasy about your safety. Protecting yourself and your family should be one of your number one priorities but it shouldn’t be something that leaves you tossing and turning at night. Dealing with kind of anxiety can be done with practical solutions, such as installing a good quality home security system and traveling with self defense products on hand, just in case. You could also look into self defense classes to learn how to handle yourself in the case of an unexpected attack. Protecting yourself in this way will massively lessen your chances of landing in trouble and will further help to set your mind at ease when it comes to your physical safety.
If your anxiety relates to loneliness or fear for your loved ones, staying connected and keeping in regular contact with them is an important part of dealing with this. Many people have a tendency to isolate themselves when feeling significant worry or pressure, but this is not the right way to go! Talking to people you love, whether it’s about your worries or about other general topics, is an important release for your mind. If you are unable to see your friends and family face-to-face due to social distancing regulations, make a habit of speaking to them over Facetime or Skype so that you can fight your loneliness, ease your worries, blow off some steam and know that they’re doing well.
Turn it Off
For many people, the news and social media have become a major source of anxiety. From constant news about the pandemic and global issues in politics and justice to a constant source of people to compare yourself to, this is no surprising fact.
PSA: Spending too much time on our phones, mindlessly scrolling, can be downright dangerous for your mental health!!!! Read it again!!!
A good idea is to identify where your internet-related anxiety is stemming from. If it’s COVID statistics that are stressing you out, try to avoid news platforms and other places where you might be exposed to that information. If you’re damaging your self-image by constantly comparing yourself and your home to photos of fitness models and moms with perfectly curated playrooms on Instagram, unfollow them all (they won’t be offended) or delete the app completely.
If your phone use is sucking all your time and making you unproductive during your work or school day, you might want to delete all the apps that steal your attention or perhaps put limitations on how much time you’re allowed to spend on those apps each day. Each problem may require a different solution, so pinpoint what will be the best route for you AND ACTUALLY DO IT!
Practice Meditation & Prayer
Meditation and prayer is a great way to help you deal with stress and anxiety both in short-term situations and in the long-term as well. Praying about everything that is upsetting you helps you to focus on the present, rather than worrying about the future or the past and also allows you to rationalize in stressful or anxiety-inducing situations. Praying a rosary is also very relaxing. Although it can be hard at first, it just takes a little practice to get the hang of it. There are so many benefits to meditation and prayer. Some benefits include improving your self-awareness, bettering your sleep, increasing your patience and putting you in a better mood. Meditation and praying can even have benefits for your physical health since it can reduce blood pressure and sleep problems which often turn into physical discomfort.
Work it Out
Exercise is another amazing way to manage anxiety and stress, as well as depression if you find yourself feeling hopeless. Getting your sweat on and releasing pent-up negative energy is for your mind and can also serve as a time to reflect and be present in the moment, which can allow you to process some difficult thought patterns. More than this, we all know that exercise releases endorphins, our happy hormones, which will boost our moods and make us feel good about ourselves and our lives. Many people use exercise as a coping mechanism, and we think that this is a pretty healthy one.
It’s easy to get caught up in all the bad in the world – there seems to be so much of it. However, it really is crucial to remember that there’s a whole lot to be happy about too. Starting some kind of gratitude practice, like a journal or even just thinking about what you’re grateful for at the end of each day, will force you to become more aware of the good in your life. It may be hard at first, but the more you focus on positive things (even if they’re small) the more it will open your eyes to little happy moments, accomplishments or even material things that you’re grateful to have in your life. A shift towards more positive thinking in this way will help to take your mind off all the bad.
There are endless tips and hacks to cope with anxiety, with everything from health and nutrition to nifty devices and tools. However, it’s important to remember that sometimes we humans just need a little help. Reaching out to a therapist might be the best route for you and you should always seek medical help if you know you cannot handle the problem on your own.