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HOW TO DECREASE ANXIETY DURING A PANDEMIC

BREATHE

  • Breathe in for five, hold for a second, breathe out for ten

  • The slow exhale tricks the brain into relaxing the body

PROGRESSIVE MUSCLE RELAXATION

  • Tense a group of muscles as you breathe in, relax them as you breathe out

  • Do in an order (top to bottom, bottom to top, your choice)

FIVE SENSES ACTIVITY (GROUNDING) - this is a great way to stop a panic attack

  • Notice five things you can SEE

  • Notice four things you can FEEL

  • Notice three things you can HEAR

  • Notice two things you can SMELL

  • Notice one thing you can TASTE

DO SOMETHING PRODUCTIVE

  • Activity is a great distraction

  • Do an activity which gives you satisfaction

  • Examples: Clean something, organize items for donation, learn a craft, read, walk the dog, weed or rake, make a list of people to check in with

KEEP ON A SCHEDULE

  • A schedule helps us feel more in control

  • Put things on it that are 

    • Solitary (reading, crafting, baking, self-care, learning)​

    • Social (calling friends and family, checking in on social media)

    • Necessary (cleaning, doing laundry)

    • Physical (exercise - walking is GREAT exercise)

  • Do not stay on news or social media sites for long amounts of time

  • Avoid too much input without a rest for your system

  • Take breaks to switch activities

  • Spend some time away from your phone

  • Eat at regular meal times

CONTROL WHAT IS YOURS TO CONTROL

  • Remind yourself of what you are doing to help contain the spread

    • I am staying home, I am washing my hands and keeping an appropriate distance​

    • I am not putting myself or those around me in danger

    • I am trusting the experts to do their jobs. EVERYONE wants this to be controlled and eradicated soon

    • I do not have to spend time dwelling on what is not mine to control

HELPFUL
Mental Health Apps

Calm

Headspace

Breathe2Relax

CBT iCoach (insomnia)

Take a Break

Mindfulness

Breathe

Mood Tools

Moodkit

Virtual Hope Box

NATIONAL HOTLINES

Suicide 1-800-273-8255

Domestic Violence 1-800-799-7233

Crisis Text Line - text CONNECT to 741741

National Substance Abuse Helpline 

1-800-662-HELP (4357)

National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

1-800-950-NAMI (6264)

WASH YOUR HANDS