Healthcare and world events have created new and profound levels of insecurity. The world questions a new “normal” as COVID research presents conflicting news reports each day. Now, more than ever, it is important to practice emotional self-care. This article offers five suggestions to help you or your loved one manage stress and anxiety while at home.

Minimize Newsfeeds

Knowledge of world events helps some to remain calm, while others are overwhelmed by alarming reports. If personal anxiety or distress results from watching the news, reading disturbing statistics, or listening to ongoing pandemic updates limit the amount you absorb. Seek the latest information at specific times of the day and focus on other activities during the rest of your awake time. Choose reputable resources, not neighborhood gossip or random assumptions. Listen to trusted advice and recommendations from national and local authorities.

Spend Time with Pets

Social Distancing limits interaction with several people and groups. Consider having an inside pet. A furry friend reduces stress while decreasing the sensation of isolation. A pet helps us to feel a part of something and is also a good listener. Neurotransmitters in the brain are increased when petting dogs or cats, resulting in stress reduction.

Maintain a Routine

Stick to a normal routine as much as possible to keep a sense of normalcy in an otherwise uncertain time. Get up and go to bed at similar times every day. Maintain good personal hygiene habits. Eat healthy meals at regular times and continue to exercise. Eat breakfast before turning on the news to decrease early-morning anxiety.

Take Time to Unwind

When it seems as if the world is moving too fast, manage your anxiety and frustrations by taking time to de-stress and relax. A variety of activities may help to accomplish this, including a few listed below.

  • Practice meditation – Mindfulness meditation is a mental training practice used in stressful situations. Your thoughts are brought into the present by focusing on the emotions, reflections, and sensations you are experiencing “in the moment.”
  • Focus on breathing – Deep abdominal breathing increases the supply of oxygen to your brain and promotes a feeling of calmness. Research reveals abdominal breathing for 20 to 30 minutes each day reduces anxiety.
  • Try yoga – Yoga is a popular method of stress relief and exercise. The eastern practice of yoga enhances moods, lowers cholesterol, blood pressure, and heart rate while modulating the stress response.

Connect with Others

Social distancing is not defined by complete isolation. Continue to stay in contact with loved ones by telephone, e-mail, social media, or video conferencing. Listen to those who need to share their thoughts. Let your loved one speak freely about their concerns and fears. Reassure them their feelings are valid and let them know you are there for them.

The world may be uncertain and worrisome right now, but Bridge to Better Living is here to support you. An abundance of resources are available from our expert Transition Consultants when you are starting to think of transitioning to a Senior Living Community. Contact Bridge to Better Living and together we will navigate your journey during the COVID pandemic.