Facing the Stress of Pandemic Life and Isolation Successfully
Remember those days when we all thought the pandemic and its fallout would be over in a few months? As we move further in 2021, it’s crystal clear that we’ve been dealing with far more than we ever imagined. This means health scares, economic fears, social isolation, and lots of stress. Lots and lots of stress.
Good news: We don’t need to know when things will return to “normal” before we manage the added stress in our lives. If we face up to it, we can assess our personal needs. From there, the self-help steps become more clear.
The Stress of Pandemic Life and Isolation
To put it mildly, we all have our plates very full these days. Let’s recap with a small sampling of what we’ve been facing since early 2020:
- A global pandemic
- Potential financial hardships and job loss
- Isolation from your loved ones
- Loss of your daily routine and rhythm
- Suddenly being with your family 365/24/7
- Civil unrest
- Societal division and strife
These difficult factors — individually or in combination — can contribute to a wide array of stress-related issues. Both physical and emotional signs and symptoms may result unless the situation is managed.
Some Common Stress Symptoms
- Feeling detached or “out of it”
- Headaches and unexplained physical aches, tension, and pain
- Digestive issues, e.g. acid reflux
- Fluctuations in appetite and weight
- Sexual dysfunction
- Sleep disturbances
- Fatigue, low energy
- Shaking hands, sweaty palms
- Racing heart
4 Ways to Face the Stress of Our Times Successfully
1. Practice Self-Care
Under normal circumstances, self-care would be non-negotiable. With the entire planet trying to navigate a deadly pandemic, self-care is essential. Some components to include:
- Relaxation techniques like yoga, breathing exercises, and meditation
- Regular sleep patterns
- Daily exercise and activity
- Healthy eating habits
2. Take Regular Breaks From the News
In the age of 24/7 updates, sprinkled with misleading headlines and biased perspectives, it is crucial to step away from your screens several times a day. Your mind needs regular breaks to reset and recover. Set up a few times per day to check headlines and notifications. Otherwise, give your brain a break.
3. Stay Connected
Even in a time of social distancing, make every possible effort to stay connected with your support system. It’s tempting to withdraw in the face of so much adversity. Resist that urge. Find solace in the company of trusted companions. Also, remember that you may end up being the one who offers some support to them.
4. Keep Some Steady Routines
The pandemic and its mitigation tactics have thrown most of us for a loop in terms of daily structure. You can take back control and peace of mind by creating routines — and sticking to them. Even if you don’t have to leave the house, you can still treat your mornings as if you so. Also, your commitment to self-care is an ideal way to institute more day-to-day routines into your life.
What If the Stress Gets to Be Too Much?
There is never any shame in asking for help. In light of recent events, there may be no better time than now to get the support you need. Stress can become too much to handle. As you can see from the symptoms list above, stress and poor coping methods can turn into a vicious cycle. There is no need to suffer in silence and isolation. We’re all struggling through this together.
Committing to regular therapy sessions is a giant step toward the healing you need right now. Whether those sessions happen in person or via video chat, you’ll be guided by a skilled professional. Take the first step today and get 2021 off to a strong start. Read more about anxiety treatment. Let’s set you up for a consultation soon.