2020 will remain a very special year. Between containment and mandatory mask wearing, the Covid-19 pandemic affects our lives in many ways …
Stress, anguish, anxiety… How to manage on a daily basis?
Mental Health and Covid-19
When we talk about a health crisis, we don’t necessarily think about the consequences that Covid-19 has on our mental health. Isolation, anxiety-provoking environment and stressful news can be the cause of evils difficult to manage on a daily basis. Whether you are of an anxious nature or not, this epidemic and its consequences lead to many more or less alarming symptoms that you must learn to manage in order to take care of yourself and not be too much affected by everything that is happening at the moment.
Understanding Stress, Anxiety and Depression
While they are often cited together, stress, anxiety and depression are very different things and do not require the same solutions. Stress is a normal reaction to an abnormal situation, it is what allows our brain to adapt to difficult situations. It is therefore necessary to distinguish between good stress during your wedding preparations, for example, and bad stress. It appears and disappears at the same time as its cause. If you feel stress every time you have to put on a mask or go out, you will have to limit these events to calm you down.
Anxiety, on the other hand, is not necessarily based on an actual event, but rather on an apprehension of a possible event. If you are afraid for the future, of a total reconfinement or of not being able to spend special moments with your loved ones, you are suffering from anxiety. Anxiety allows your brain to anticipate difficult situations in order to prepare you for them, however, it is not mandatory and should be monitored.
Depression, on the other hand, defines a temporary moment of sadness, weariness and discouragement. In such a context, it is easy to become discouraged because the end is not yet in sight for some of us. It is an emotional fatigue. If the depression persists and worsens, if the emotions felt are closer to despair and have been there for several weeks, it is important to consult a specialist because it could be depression, which is much more serious.
Our tips for managing stress and anxiety related to Covid-19
Be lenient and listen
The first thing to do if you are stressed or anxious is to take a break and listen to yourself. Ask yourself the right questions and hear your answers. Are you feeling afraid? Anxiety? Is it temporary? Do you want to take your mind off it? Between telecommuting and isolation, a health crisis can affect your morale to a greater or lesser extent, and this is completely normal. Accept it, yes, this year is difficult for everyone, so for you too.
Set up a daily routine
The best way to fight against an uncertain and anxiety-provoking environment is to establish a routine, and therefore new reflexes, that will reassure you. Start each day in the same way and don’t throw yourself on your phone or the news channels as soon as you open your eyes. Preserve yourself for at least an hour after waking up. Stretch, breathe, get some fresh air, read a little. It is important not to lose touch with reality in such a context, after breakfast, go shower and get dressed. Once you feel ready to face the day, go ahead.
Some tips for your daily routine
- Allow yourself one hour without a screen when you get up;
- Do at least one activity that makes you happy every day;
- Get some fresh air;
- Get dressed;
- Call your family and friends;
- Plan your day every morning;
- Organize real parties, plan a meal and a good movie or a video game with your friends;
- Enjoy your children and pets;
- Take a nap before going back to work;
- Find a work schedule that suits you if you can;
- Play sports;
The role of the intestine
The intestine is one of the places in our body with the most receptors: our choices, emotions and moods therefore have a direct impact on our intestinal flora. So think about taking care of it with a healthy and anti-inflammatory diet for example. Take the time to cook raw products in order to limit the additives and preservatives present in prepared dishes and processed foods. You can also take the opportunity to take a course of food supplements to provide your body with everything it needs to combat stress and anxiety: vitamins, minerals or probiotics.
Reacting in case of a crisis
The most difficult thing is often knowing how to react in a crisis. Whether it’s an anxiety or stress attack, it’s important to adopt a few reflexes, especially if you can no longer practice the things that relaxed you before the health crisis. Isolate yourself, sit down and breathe. Take a deep breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. Do this at least 3 times in a row. Focus on an object or point that you can touch to help reassure yourself. You can also use Bach Flowers, including the “Rescue” spray, which helps you through an emotional crisis. Some meditation aid applications also have an “Emergency” mode to help you calm down.