The coronavirus has created a thick fog of uncertainty surrounding almost every aspect of our lives – from work and finances to travel and socialising.
With so much going on right now that’s out of our control, it’s normal to feel anxious or uneasy.
Everyone has different ways of coping with uncertainty, but if you’re struggling with a fear of the unknown, here are a few ideas to get through.
Maintain a Daily Routine
Control the things you can by creating a daily routine with rituals you love. Maintaining a daily routine can help you feel safe and provide some stability during such an uncertain time. Plus, routine is known to reduce stress and anxiety.
Having your morning coffee or afternoon walk each day can help you feel grounded and comforted when other aspects of your life have been turned upside-down.
When you’re used to knowing what to expect in most situations, you’re going to have a pretty high intolerance of uncertainty. You may be able to remove some of the anxiety that surrounds uncertainty by practising tolerating it in your everyday life.
You can seek out uncertainty in small ways, such as going to see a movie without watching the trailer, getting a coffee from a different café without reading the reviews, or attending a social event without checking out the guest list first.
You’ll likely learn that even if things don’t turn out the way you’d hoped, you managed to handle the uncertainty just fine. Who knows – you might even start to enjoy the excitement of not knowing what comes next.
Focus on the Present
Anxiety breeds on worries about the future. If you spend your time wondering when you’ll go back to the office or whether you’ll be able to go on that Europe trip or not, you’ll likely be left feeling hopeless and upset.
Try to take your focus off the uncertainty of the future and predicting what might happen, and instead look at what’s happening right now. You can focus your attention on the present through mindfulness practices such as meditation, yoga, and journalling.
Reach out to Friends and Family
While it may be tempting to slip into a warm bath of denial, only to emerge when COVID-19 blows over, it’s probably not the best option for your mental health.
Everyone is feeling the effects of the coronavirus pandemic in one way or another, so chances are your loved ones share at least some of your thoughts, feelings, and concerns. It’s been said that sharing lived experience of mental illness can provide hope in tough times, so you might find it helpful to reach out and talk things through with other people going through it.
Pick up the phone, create a group chat, or book in a dinner (while observing social distancing measures, of course).
Our counsellors are here if you need someone to talk to. Learn about our counselling services and how to book an appointment here.
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