I have a confession to make. I suffer from anxiety. I'm talking about chronic anxiety even when there ISN'T a pandemic going on. Over the years, I have worked very hard to learn how to manage this and continue to pursue my crazy dreams (such as owning a retail boutique)!
Today, I read some statistics released from the American Psychiatric Association. Nearly half of Americans are anxious about getting sick from COVID-19. About 40% are anxious about getting seriously ill. Lastly, about 36% of Americans report that the virus is having a serious effect on their mental health. These are frightening numbers, but I can certainly understand them. So FN would like to do our part to help.
Like many of you, I'm trying to get through this life changing experience one day at a time. Have I had days where I don't feel like doing anything at all except watch tv and give my kids hugs (that they often shrug off, they are teenagers after all)? Yes! And that really is ok. Then I will have a great day where I am determined to do all the work I can on my business from home and at the end of the day I say to myself, yes you did it! It really is ok to have both of those kind of days and I thought I'd share some tips & tricks I've adopted to help me have more of those "Yes, I did it!" days.
- Zero Guilt. I decided to list this first because not only do I feel it's important, but I also need to remind myself of this often. I find that "work from home" can be tough for those of us who are not used to working at our homes. Working from home does not mean you don't get a day off! So if you have a day where you go from your "day pjs" straight to your "night pjs", that's ok! Get back at it the next day and don't let that guilt paralyze you.
- Fresh Air & Daily Walks. I try to get outside for a walk every day. Some days my walk is only to the corner and back while others it's much longer. Either way, our unofficial FN mascot Tyler truly appreciates this!
- Self-Care. This looks different for everyone. Some may enjoy a bubble bath. Some may enjoy giving themselves a mani/pedi. Why not have an in-home dance party? Personally, I like this one and I just giggle as my kids make fun of my taste in music. Other examples to care for one's self include: eating something healthy, going for a bike ride, drawing/sketching/painting, meditation, yoga, wrapping up in a warm blanket, exercise, & sleep in just to name a few. Think about what self-care may look like for you. Share them here with us!
- Call Someone. Let someone who is far away know you care. If you have a smart phone, laptop or other device with video capability you can even do a face to face call. Last night I FaceTimed with my mom and it made us both feel good! We laughed about how bad our hair looked and how I was already tucked into bed at 8pm. We also have done this with my entire immediate family and that sure has helped our spirits as well.
- Gratitude Journal. This something I know helps a lot of people and I have yet to adopt this. I tend to do a nightly mental recap of things I am thankful for however writing them down would take it to another level in helping relieve anxiety.
- Start A Project. This can be something around the house that you've been meaning to do but just haven't found the time. I find that projects like this provide a much needed distraction from those pesky negative thoughts that can creep into my mind especially during times like a quarantine! I plan to do a closet clear out at some point and would also like to organize my basement storage. What's a project you've been meaning to tackle?
These are just a few ideas I've compiled. We here at FN are here for you and of course there are tons of great resources out there. Here are a couple very reliable and helpful resources:
The National Disaster Distress Helpline: 1-800-985-5990
The Center for Disease Control Website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html
The Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Click or Call: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/current-events/supporting-your-emotional-well-being-during-the-covid-19-outbreak/ ; 1-800-273-TALK (8255)