Events are being canceled, people are panic buying supplies and every headline can seem very daunting. All of the news about the coronavirus outbreak can cause people to feel anxious and nervous about the future. We are here with tips to help you stay positive.
Limit Your News Intake
While paying attention to the news is important during this time, consuming too much information could increase your anxiety. As psychiatrist Dr. Lim Boon Leng explains, “you need to control the type and amount of news you consume.” Try to only watch or read the news once or twice a day and keep in mind that many of the reports you come across on social media are misleading or altogether false.
Focus on Now
When you begin to feel overwhelmed with information, whether it’s about coronavirus or anything else you have going on in your life, it’s important to focus on the present. As Paul Krismer, founder of the Happiness Experts Company in Canada, explains, “at the present moment, most of us are healthy; our loved ones are well, and life is fine.” Express gratitude for what you have in the present moment. Gratitude has been proven to help people have a more optimistic outlook.
Focusing on the present can also involve focusing on what you can change now. There are steps you can take to ensure that your health and the health of your family is your number one priority. Taking action in the present moment helps you feel like you are in control of the situation and will ease fears.
Manage Your Physical Well Being
Not only can exercising boost your immune system, but it can also help you feel better, which will allow you to cope with the nervousness you are feeling. Exercising regularly, getting outside into fresh air, eating well and making time for self-care are all important steps you should be taking to limit stress. With more people working from home and children being home due to school closing, having the exact same daily routine every day can be difficult, but finding time for physical activity and self-care will have many positive benefits.
Unsure of how to get your whole family moving? Check out this article on family fitness.
Vaile Wright, Ph.D., the director of clinical research and quality at the APA, said that feeling panicked and overwhelmed is a natural response to uncertainty. When you begin to feel this way, don’t get frustrated. Instead, allow yourself to feel whatever you are experiencing, but do not stay in that negative emotional space for too long. Think rationally, live in the present and remember that everything you see may not be true.