There are a lot of unknowns in the world right now.
Millions are working from home, many are out of a job, schools are closed, and emotions are running high. After a sudden change, anxiety is not unexpected. Stress is the body’s normal, biological response to perceived challenges.
At Damar Services, Inc., dealing with stress is not a new concept. Every day, staff walk side-by-side with clients teaching coping techniques and self-calming strategies. Here are a few of the best ways to help manage stress during uncertain times.
- Set a schedule, and make it visual
Schedules bring structure to what can feel like an out-of-control situation. Kids might resist schedules, but the truth is, they thrive with structure and generally don’t like surprises. When making a schedule, involve the whole family and make it visual. Using stickers, colored markers, and other embellishments and hanging the finished product in a common area will help everyone pay more attention to it.
- Laugh it up
Sometimes fun is more than just fun. It can be a strategic way to resolve tense situations. So, if things get stressful, find a lighthearted distraction. Share a funny story or take a moment to watch a silly video.
- Celebrate success
It’s easy to get caught up in the hard stuff and forget to celebrate the good. But, it’s important to recognize the great things that are still happening. It might be hanging a picture on the refrigerator, making a special dinner after a milestone, or having a dance party after a good day. Whatever it is, choose to celebrate the moment.
- Take care of yourself
Be mindful of self-care. Put time in your schedule to relax, to recover, and to have fun. Pick an activity that works for you – spending time outside, video calling a friend, listening to music, or practicing deep breaths. Don’t be afraid to ask for a break if you need it. Even with social distancing, we are all in this together.
For those that feel their stress or anxiety is unmanageable and interfering with daily life, consider reaching out to a mental health professional. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – 1-800-273-8255 – is available 24/7 and offers free and confidential support.