I’m quite notorious for over reacting, panicking and thinking that the worst when I read bad news. But over time, I’ve come to allow myself to feel the panic for a brief period, and then rationalize and come back down to earth.
The media is absolutely saturated with the C word (the other C word, not the one you’re thinking about). War-style documentation of over-worked hospital staff, struggling businesses and infection/death toll statics rallied off every day like the daily stock market check.
It’s very easy to think that the world is ending and life will never return to normal. Through studying news journalism, I have become increasingly media literate and can understand that whilst the media isn’t necessarily over-reacting, it is trying to elicit a reaction of fear and stress from the audience.
With this in mind, I’ve come up with a few ways that have helped me to remain calm a-mid the panic, and hopefully you can take one or two of them on board.
Although the Cornavirus pandemic is very much a cause for public concern, and the Government have rightly shut down the necessary industries to protect vulnerable people. However, if yourself and your loved ones are currently safe – try to focus on that. Don’t fill your time researching the death rates, rise of infection and risks to everyone.
Use this time wisely
A month ago, I would have taken a 24 hour day and tried to fit 36 hours into it. I felt over-worked and over-stretched. Saying yes to everything and burning the match at both ends. I had no time to do the things that I enjoyed. I now have an almost infinite amount of time to go for runs, practice yoga everyday, sleep well, focus on university work for an appropriate amount of time and calm my anxious mind down.
The stress of finances is paramount during this time. Many people have lost jobs, students are calling for their tuition fees to be re-reimbursed, families are taking out pay-day loans, self employed are living off a fraction of their income, and supermarkets are stocking a percentage of their usual amounts. However, money is always a worry. Whether its on a mass scale like this, or a minor scale like losing an extra £10/week. Money will always be a worry if you allow it to be, and whilst many people are either currently or soon to be in unimaginable financial crisis at the moment, there’s going to be a recovery. If you were previously financially stable before this crisis, you will return back to that. If you were previously financially unstable before the crisis, consider the fact that the next few months will only be essential outgoings, and will potentially help you save money in the long term.
Get outdoors (safely)
The outside isn’t cancelled. As long as you are safe to leave the house, and you respect the advised 2m distancing, then take time each day to get yourself out of the same four walls and explore. More than ever, this pandemic has proven that when all stability is cancelled, humans are brought back out of the grind of 9-5 and back into nature.
Respect your health
Whilst there’s nothing wrong with sitting in front of a screen and eating snacks, try to incorporate a sense of health into your lifestyle. Too much of anything will make you feel rubbish within yourself. Too much screen time, too much unhealthy food and lack of stimulation will make you feel both exhausted and unable to sleep. Establishing a form of daily routine, eating appropriately and keeping stimulated will help you to feel better during this time.
Allow yourself to feel shit
Of course, allow yourself to feel low if you are feeling low. Avoiding it will make it worse, and sometimes having a big rant on the phone or cry to your household will make you feel better in the long term. This is a scary and uncertain time, so respect how you feel – don’t force yourself to see the situation in a certain way; just check in with yourself to ensure you’re preventing yourself from falling into a dark hole