Originally published March 19, 2020.
We have all heard (many times over the past few weeks) the important instructions to protect you and those around you from COVID-19. Keeping these things in mind, Syringa Hospital and Clinics would like to also suggest the importance of paying attention to both physical safety and emotional well-being in the days, weeks and months to come.
Here are some tips that may help you and your family manage anxiety during this time:
1. Limit exposure to the news and media. It is tempting to be tuned into the news, Facebook and other forms of media and immerse ourselves with all that is happening. While it is important to stay informed and have ways to receive important updates, it is important to “unplug.” Be aware of the impact that what you are viewing and hearing is having on you. Set limits for yourself and for your family.
2. Establish new routine. During influx and uncertainty of daily regular schedules due to school closures, working from home and quarantines, anxiety can be quite common. Try, as much as possible, to create a new routine to accommodate your current situation. It may be beneficial to include children and other family members in creating a routine to assess and plan around priorities and concerns of the entire family.
3. Get outside. While social distancing is important, this does not mean you are trapped in your house. Go outside and get fresh air, sunshine and if possible, do something active. Be mindful of nature and take this opportunity to enjoy the beauty of our environment.
4. Practice good self-care. Incorporate breathing exercises, mindfulness or meditation into your day. Utilize journaling as a way to express your fears, concerns and thought. Listen to music or read a book that soothes your soul. Practice self-kindness.
5. Help others. Finding opportunities to turn your focus to helping others can be a great way to manage the stress of this situation and reduce the feelings of isolation.
6. Ask for help. It can be hard to ask for help, especially when there is so much need around us. Asking for help in getting your needs met or in keeping yourself safe and health takes courage. There are many who care and are just waiting for you to ask for help. If you need additional resources and support, feel free to contact Syringa’s clinic social worker Maja Ledgerwood, LCSW for assistance. You can reach Maja through Syringa’s My Chart Portal or by calling the clinic 208-983-8590.