Reducing Pandemic Anxiety

Hello Lovelies,

My name is Ellie and it’s so good to see you. I wanted to go more in depth into anxiety because we are facing unprecedented times (whole pandemic thing). Many of us who wouldn't normally have anxiety are feeling it right now. So, I wanted to go over a few tips and tricks to try to stave away the pandemic anxiety that we're all feeling. As someone who already has anxiety all of this extra pressure really has affected me in a big way.

The first thing we can do is understand that in this life there are so many things that we cannot control. We can't control other people. We can't control viruses or how they spread. We as an individual can't control the broader spectrum of things, but you can control yourself. You can control whether you go out despite instructions to stay home. You can control washing your own hands and taking necessary precautions. For me focusing on things that are within my scope of control helped me immensely.

Another thing that helped me personally was looking at the actual facts of this disease. I recommend visiting the CDC's website for the most current information as I am not a doctor or medical professional: Let me be clear I am not saying this this virus isn’t severe because it can and does claim lives. I am saying when I looked at the statistics it made me feel a little bit better. Let’s compare the Novel Corona Virus to the Flu. According to the CDC Response team, COVID-19 has between a 1.8% to 3.4% mortality rate. An over whelming majority of deaths occurring with people over 75 years of age. The flu has a .1% mortality rate. So this virus is much deadlier than the flu. But this means that at worst 96.6% of people that get COVID-19 are going to make it through alive. This fact for me helped immensely. This isn't the zombie apocalypse. This isn't a world ending disease. Yes, this is bad for people who have preexisting lung conditions or are elderly. We should 100% do our part to keep them out of harm’s way. However, the fear mongering is unnecessary. We don’t need to be in a constant state of hyper vigilance and panic. This virus is just showing society’s true colors and how we handle emergency situations.

Besides looking up the confirmed facts of this virus and taking ownership of yourself, you can practice stress lowering activities. This can be meditation or yoga. If you're feeling overwhelmed you can sit down and do meditative breathing. There are a lot of informational websites and YouTube videos on this I'll link a few below. Along with this distracting yourself with hobbies or things you enjoy can also be effective. Personally, I like to paint and write poetry. You don't have to be good at these things, just try something new or that you enjoy. If you’ve got the supplies for it, try it out. You could also take a walk. If you have a dog spend time taking extra care of it bathe and brush your dog. Take it for a walk, maybe play ball. Get out of the house. Go for a drive around the block, fill up on gas. While you should stay six feet away from other people there are still things outside of your home that you can do. Go to park to areas that you know there won’t be a ton of people. Make sure you’re safe about it. Let people know where you're going. You can plan for the future! There is going to be a future on this Earth. This is just going to be another rotation. Eventually when this settles, we are all going to need to keep living. There are more things out there, more life to be lived. If you’ve been thinking about changing jobs now is a great time to start refreshing your resume. Perhaps start researching programs that you could get into after this storm passes.

An unexpected issue that stems from quarantine or self-isolation is loneliness. A lot of people are stuck at home alone but they don’t need to feel this way. We have so many different ways to be social without physically being in the presence of other people. Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Discord are all available at a touch of a button. This allows you to meet and be social people all over the world. Recently, I found out that Google has a Netflix party that allows you to watch movies in sync with other people for free.

We need to remember that as a country, as a world, do everything with kindness and compassion. Reach out to people who are elderly or sickly or alone and ensure they are doing okay. Even a phone call could mean the world to them. If you have a higher immune system, maybe you could drop off essentials on their porch or pay for Shipt shopping.

Go out, try to stay away from as many people as possible but get some fresh air. Pick up things for people who aren't able. Be calm and be kind to each other because the world is going to go on and we don't want to be remembered as the people who were really aggressive over a luxury item (toilet paper).

Keep Calm and Carry on Photo from WWII when Britain was being Bombed.

-Photo from the MMWR Article PDF on this page


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