Stress and anxiety is at an all time high right now. With fears over the new coronavirus making its way though the United States my mom anxiety has heightened to new levels. I know that I am not alone in this. Questions and fears about what will happen if schools and day cares close for extended periods of time, what to do if someone in our family gets sick, and my own personal fear of contracting it at work and bringing it home to my family. Not to mention the panic that is now ensuing throughout our communities driving people to do exactly what they are advising against. So I don’t know about you but I have had to relearn how to manage anxiety on a personal level.
Knowing this, there are many tools you can utilize to manage anxiety especially as a parent during these scary times.
How to Manage Anxiety
1. Stay off social media
Yes, social media can at times be a great resource and a way to catch up with friends. However, during this time of increased fear and anxiety, social media is not the place where you want to get your information from.
Distract yourself with things like reading, writing, baking, drinking. Whatever you’re into use it as a way to distract yourself from all the other shit that is going on around you.
3. Get Outside
The weather is getting warmer and here in New England at least we have had some beautiful, sunny days. Now is the perfect time to gather your kids and head outside to explore the great outdoors. Hiking, biking, walking or exploring off beaten trails local to you can help provide a much needed distraction for both yourself and your kids.
Another reason to get out of the house and get some good old fashioned exercise. If you are more of a class type person check out You Tube or Beach Body on demand (no I am not a fitness coach). There are so many different classes that you can take for free online as well from yoga to full body workouts.
This is highly advisable in order to live but it’s also a good way to calm the f*ck down. Take a nice deep breath and relax. Mediate if you need to but just keep breathing through what is making you anxious.
6. Be prepared
Be prepared but don’t hoard toilet paper. (I’m still unsure why people are buying a million rolls of toilet paper). Get essential items that you need to keep yourself and your kids fed for the couple of weeks. Things that you may want to get if you haven’t already: fever reducing mediations, board games, puzzles, books and wine.
7. Educate Yourself
Educate yourself about what is really going on. The CDC has some great resources to educate yourself on the facts and numbers. Do not blindly trust a facebook post from your second cousins best friend’s dad. This is a good tip no matter what is going on in the world.
Hopefully these tips on how to manage anxiety can help you and your family during this difficult and uncertain time. Remember to check in with yourself and others and do what you can to maintain a healthy life!