As most of us find ourselves COVID-19 self quarantined and/or isolated in one way or another, I thought it a good time to discuss anxiety.
With the current state of the world more people are finding themselves experiencing some level of anxiety.
Personally, I've been anxious my entire life. I have quite a bit of experience with it, and as for controlling it....I'm better at giving advice to others than I am at calming myself.
That said, I'm doing much better than expected through all of this.
The unknown and the feeling of a lack of control are huge anxiety triggers.
We are getting misinformation, and mixed messages daily...hourly if you spend any time online.
Yes it's very hard to process it all, and it's easy to get all worked up.
It's very easy to point fingers and cast blame. Guilty as charged.
BUT...there IS valuable, very important COVID-19 information available...
information that can save lives.
*Wash your hands often
*Don't touch your face
*Disinfect surfaces (don't forget your phone)
*Stay 6' away from people
*No group gatherings (My biggest group right now is 2)
*Don't take Advil (Ibuprofen) if you do have any symptoms
*Drink lots and lots of water. Staying hydrated helps your lungs fight the virus.
These things seem too simple to be a solution. We want...NEED...to know how to fix this.
Unfortunately, there is no quick solution. The best minds working on this don't have the answers we want. All we can do at this time is follow the advice in hopes of slowing down the spread.
Protect yourself and others, and reduce the length of this crisis, by following the advice of our scientists and doctors.
As for the anxiety....
The best defense against anxiety is ACTION.
Restore your self confidence and feel more in control by DOING.
Staying busy is crucial to reducing anxiety and stress.
Housecleaning may not sound like much fun, but staying busy is not only an amazing distraction, it creates a sense of accomplishment which is very empowering.
Organize closets, drawers, bookshelves, medicine cabinets.
Clean inside the refrigerator, oven, microwave.
Tackle the garage, attic, or basement that you have been meaning to tackle for years.
Create something...paint, sew, build something to keep your hands and mind busy.
Organize your desk, your files, old photos.
One of my first clients was a woman who wanted help organizing her home office. The room was small and extremely cluttered. The idea of attempting to organize this room was overwhelming.
We started with the filing cabinet. Convinced everything was too important to discard, she reluctantly agreed to see if she could purge anything. She was surprised at how much she was storing that she no longer needed.
As the trash bags filled, she got more and more excited. After reclaiming seventy-five percent of the cabinet space, she was motivated to tackle the closet.
Next, we removed all pictures and miscellaneous items tacked and taped to the walls and replaced them with inspirational art work. We rearranged the furniture.
The room was transformed from a crowded, cluttered and depressing space to one of organization and tranquility.
Days later she called to let me know how much her life had improved. The sense of accomplishment and pride she felt from improving the office motivated her to tackle other rooms. She only wished she had acted sooner and hadn't allowed anxiety to steal so much of her valuable time.
We all have unpleasant or daunting things on our to-do list. Tasks we avoid. Unfortunately, avoidance gives them power over us.
Every time we pass by the cluttered room, or the stack of paperwork or the incomplete home improvement project we feel anxious.
This extra time at home we are now experiencing can be put to good use. Not only can you get things done...you can distract yourself from feeling anxious...reassure yourself that you actually do still have some control.
Doing something you dread
is never as bad as
the anticipation of doing something you dread.
When you find yourself worrying, feeling anxious
and no longer in control....consider action as the solution.