3 Ways to Cope with Anxiety & Loneliness During a Crisis - Blog
by WPN Corporate Member Christine Pellegrino, M.S.,L.Ac
Christine Pellegrino is the founder, owner, and acupuncturist at the
Pellegrino Healing Center in Hyde Park, NY.
These unprecedented times have left so many of us feeling scared, overwhelmed, and emotionally and physically isolated. Although we are heading in the direction of reopening bit by bit, we still have to process past and present emotional, financial, and social hardships. Here are some things you can do to help cope with feelings of anxiety and loneliness…
1.) Come Back to Your Body.
Come back to your physical body through breathing and meditation. We are all very much in our heads right now, overthinking and catastrophizing. Catastrophizing is when we assume the worst of our situations and lead ourselves down a rabbit hole of negative potential scenarios. Many have experienced feeling hazy, in limbo, or just being stressed out from the overwhelm of uncertainty, isolation, and social uproar during these times. Practicing deep breathing, meditation, and mindfulness are extremely helpful methods in combating anxiety. Luckily there are so many ways to discover and master meditation such as:
Online Apps: Insight Timer, Headspace, Calm.
Free Content on Social Media: Many Yoga Centers, Influencers & Healing Centers are providing content that is free or has suggested donations for guided meditation and mindfulness practices via Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter videos.
Books on Audible, Kindle,and Paperback on how to meditate for an improved mental state.
2.) Connect, Connect, Connect.
Whether you are quarantining alone at home, living with one or more people, or you’re an essential worker serving the masses right now, you may be experiencing feelings of loneliness or isolation. You are not alone in your bizarre-feeling emotions. Many people, no matter their circumstances, are feeling disconnected from themselves and others, untethered from human connection. However, there are ways we can fill our need for human connection:
Call or text an old friend, your family, your neighbor. Reaching out to check in will make you and the other party feel important and heard.
Schedule a social distance walk, picnic, or get together. Getting outside of your normal surroundings (if possible) with friends or family can change up and improve your headspace while you connect.
Join an online group that interests you or coordinate zoom meetings/parties/happy hours.
Give back to a charity of your choice by lending a hand, raising awareness, or donating;
there are many social causes and organizations to help out right now.
3.) Go Easy on Yourself .
While it’s important to have goals and motivate ourselves as much as we can, don’t be too hard on yourself when you have not been overly productive or social. So many of us are telling ourselves that we should be doing so much more right now: like fixing up the house, taking up a new hobby, or crossing off a bunch of other items on our pandemic/world crisis to-do list. Try your best to shut down the incessant shoulds and should nots during this time. Instead use this time to:
Prioritize what makes you happy and calms your mind (reading, running, writing, watching comedy,cooking your favorite meal, etc.).
Join and help out with causes you are passionate about.
Let go of the guilt of an unproductive day.
Just take everything one small step at a time. You’ll get there.