Learn to Cope with Stress and Anxiety | By Tracy McQuarter, LPCA, CRC
During this time of fear and uncertainty related to the pandemic of COVID-19, things are extra tough. We know there is an increase in stress, anxiety, and depression among Kentuckians.
Stress from COVID 19 can negatively affect your health
Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones
Changes in sleep or eating patterns
Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
Worsening of chronic health problems
Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs
It is important to find ways to cope with stress, especially right now. We can find ways to be more positive and minimize feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression. How you manage your mental health will set the tone for your household. You can be an example for your spouse, partner, roommate, children, and all who live under your roof.
Change How You Think to Manage Your Anxiety Symptoms
Remember, the way we think affects the way we feel which affects the way we behave. Keeping this in mind, just a small change in the way you think can impact the way you feel.
If you can change the way you look at the situation, even just a little shift in a more positive direction, it will help you begin to feel better. This is a core piece of how we approach online anxiety treatment right now!
As an example, instead of complaining to yourself that you're stuck at home another day, try to find the positive to the situation. I get to be home another day which gives me time for reading or watching a new show.
Talk It Out: Seek Help With Online Counseling in Kentucky
Finding ways to better cope with stress will also help you feel better. One great way to do that is simply to reach out.
Talk to someone! Even though we need to stay self-isolated in our own homes during this time, there are a lot of options to help you connect to your loved ones. You can call, Skype, Zoom or FaceTime friends and family.
There are also lots of resources to utilize. Mental health support in Kentucky with telehealth and online counseling to speak to a caring therapist.
Take Time for Self-Care to Boost Your Personal Mental Health
Another way to help yourself cope is to take care of yourself.
One way to do this is to keep a routine, even if you’re spending more time at home. That routine helps your time to feel structured and purposeful. In turn, this helps you direct your thoughts toward positivity by giving you something to look forward to. Also, making time each day to eat well and exercise will help you diminish stress by creating those wonderful feel-good endorphins. It’s a great all-natural way to boost your mood.
You should also find ways to relax — yoga and deep breathing are very helpful options for this. If you need help with any of these strategies, there are many, many videos online which can help you make a meal plan. Instructors across the world can lead you through a workout or yoga routine. Many experts can even guide you through a mindfulness exercise. Take advantage of the global connections we are finally making!
Strategically Disconnect from Online Triggers
Another way to help reduce the effects of the pandemic is to not over-saturate yourself with COVID-19 info and news. It's always important to stay informed, but it is also important to prioritize your mental health. If having constant updates is causing you to become anxious or depressed, it is okay to turn the COVID-19 info off sometimes. It can even be good for you to disconnect from these constant online triggers.
Take this time to enjoy your family, learn a new hobby, or to find ways to help others in the community. Find what you enjoy and focus on that. Stay positive. We will all get through this together.
If you’re in a place where you feel you may need to reach out to someone for more resources or help, please do. I want you to know that there are lots of great resources available at our practice.
Start Online Therapy in Kentucky with Mindsight:
We're all already overwhelmed. But, getting started with online mental health support in Kentucky couldn't be easier. At Mindsight, we want to connect you with an online therapist in just a few simple steps:
2. Talk with "Bubbly Britany" to pick the best team member to help you feel better
3. Get comfortable and calm with online therapy in Kentucky now
Next Steps & Resources
What counselors do you recommend for online counseling? During COVID-19, all of our counselors are offering online counseling services. Here’s the link to Tracy’s professional bio.
What if I own a mental health group practice and need extra support and resources during this time? We have just the thing! Kasey Compton, CEO of Mindsight Behavioral Group, is incredibly passionate about helping other practices succeed! Check out KC Consulting!