facebook pixel

Helpful, Gentle Ways to Relieve Anxiety

There’s a great deal going on at the moment and as we try to make sense of it all, we’re well aware that some people may be feeling anxious, stressed or concerned. These feelings are completely understandable and to be expected at times like these.

To try and help, we’ve trawled the web for tips and advice. One of the very best sources of information we could find was Young Minds, one of the UK’s leading charities fighting for children and young people’s mental health.

According to their experts, “whether you’re anxious about your own health, someone in your family or the impact that the virus could have on your life, there are small steps you can take which could make a big impact”.

Here’s their round up of advice:

  • Talk to someone about how you're feeling

    Whilst it is normal to feel worried, if you are starting to feel overwhelmed, Young Minds believe it’s important to acknowledge your feelings and speak to someone you trust. That might be a friend, a family member, a teacher or even a helpline.

  • Arm yourself with the facts

    There is a lot of information about the virus out there and false reports can fuel anxiety. It is recommended that you stay on top of what’s happening by using the Government website. It is the most up-to-date and reliable source of information. The NHS common questions about the virus can also be useful, if you are worried about symptoms or family members.

  • Know what you can do

    You might feel anxious about some of the official advice because it might trigger compulsive thoughts and unhelpful behaviours to do with washing and hygiene. If this happens to you, it is suggested that you talk to someone you trust. They also say you should let people around you know what you find helpful and what you don’t. Most importantly, try to remember this advice is about caring for yourself and others, but there is a limit to what you can do – so whatever happens, be kind to yourself.

  • Don’t overexpose yourself to the news

    Staying informed can make you feel in control but the constant news reports could also become overwhelming. Try to get your information from reputable websites (like those mentioned above). If you do want to read or watch the news, try to limit the amount of time you spend and stick to regular intervals in the days.

    Young Minds also recommend that if you feel like the updates are getting too much, take a break from social media. They say you should always remember that you are in control of what you see on your feed, so take breaks or mute and unfollow accounts that make you feel more worried.

  • Find things that help you feel calm

    Think about some activities that can help when you are feeling overwhelmed, like breathing techniques, writing down how you feel, playing music or talking to a friend. For some ideas, you could have a look at how you can make a self-soothe box, or these coping techniques. Often things that distract you will help ease feelings of anxiety, but try to avoid turning to stimulants like cigarettes or alcohol which can leave you feeling worse.

  • Prepare

    You might be asked to stay at home for a period of time. If you are living at home, talk to your family about how this will work and share your feelings with them, if you can. This could be quite a daunting prospect, but try to think of this as a chance to live in a different way for a while. It is suggested that you should think about what you might want to do during this time, how you will stay connected and how you would prioritise your wellbeing. Planning might help reduce any anxiety or troubling thoughts.

We hope these tips have helped to bring some calm to your thought processes. None of us know how the next weeks and months will unfold, but we can be sure to support one another – perhaps you could make a start by sharing advice like this with your friends and family? Afterall, we are in this together.