The state of the world right now can make it easy to give in to fear and worry. If you find that you you’re having a hard time staying focused on your goals, or that your physical and mental health are suffering, the stress management tools listed below can help control the effects of stress during COVID-19.
Start or Increase Your Exercise Program
Anxious thoughts running through your mind, builds up stress and tension in your body. There’s no way to break that connection. In addition, if you’re coming off any form of illness, that can leave you even further depleted.
Focus on Body Awareness
What happens when your anxiety level about risks in our world creep up on you? Do you struggle with joint pain, skin flare-ups or muscle aches? Protecting your health isn’t just about avoiding the virus that causes COVID-19. You also need to protect your mind and body from the stress hormone rush that comes from excess anxiety. Keep a journal of your anxiety levels throughout the day, and all your physical symptoms to help your doctor or physical therapist with treatment options.
Take Care of Yourself
Find an area where you can go for a relaxing walk. Sign off of Facebook and other social media accounts for a while, if they’re causing you anger or anxiety. This doesn’t mean that you have to disconnect from the world, but there are problems you can address and things that you have to just let go, to avoid anything that raises your blood pressure.
Get Proper Rest
Once you get an exercise program rolling, you may find it easier to sleep. To that end, make sure that your bedroom is:
- Free From Screens
No phone beside the bed. If you use it as an alarm, put it on the charger across the room so you have to get up to turn off the alarm, then turn the phone over and ignore it. Drink some water, read a devotional that speaks to you, and think about your intention for the day. Don’t let the world tell you where to focus.
Develop a Food Plan
In addition to telling us what to think, media wants to tell us what to eat as well. If you suffer from an inflammatory illness, pain management can be tied to diet. Keep a journal of what you eat and note your pain level, day by day. You may notice a pattern between what you consume and how you feel. If you find that you get headaches at a particular point in the day, look back at what you ate over the previous 24 hours and watch for patterns. Anything in your food, including dyes and preservatives, can lead to pain and low energy levels. Develop a food plan that works for you.
Protecting your body and mind from stress during COVID-19 takes diligent monitoring. Watch what you consume to help reduce stress levels and take joy in life. Seek the help of a physical therapy professional if your pain level gets unmanageably high.