There is no doubt there is a lot of uncertainty around the current Coronavirus outbreak, particularly given that the situation is constantly developing and the information about the virus remains incomplete. The information that you do receive can be overwhelming and tough to feel like there’s concrete actions you can take to help.

This crisis brings with it another crisis, a mental health crisis. It may feel like you do not have any control, which can then lead to feelings of anxiety and fear. However, there are some things that you can control, which can alleviate some of that anxiety and fear.

Your mental health is an integral part of your overall wellbeing and something that needs to be taken seriously. It affects how we think and handle stress in times of a crisis. Improving your mental health is a lifelong goal. Leading a balanced life and practicing good behaviors can improve your mental health so your better equipped to handle stressful situations like the current Coronavirus outbreak.

These things won’t take away the threat of the coronavirus but may help us to manage our wellbeing through this difficult time.

  • Try to manage overwhelming feelings of anxiety. Recognize and acknowledge your emotions regularly, rather than avoiding them.
  • Maintain a healthy routine. Take care of your physical health by getting enough sleep, eating regular nutritious meals and try to do some physical activity.
  • Connect with others. Talk to someone you trust and spend time connecting with friends or family who make you happy but avoid talking only about the coronavirus and the current situation.
  • Try to manage feelings of uncertainty. Try to separate what is in your control and what is out of your control. Attend to and do the things that you do have control over.
  • Try some breathing and mindfulness exercises to help you relax.
  • Incorporate movement. Try to move your body each day, even if you are indoors, as exercise helps to elevate your mood and lower stress. You can choose a less crowded area or a time when you know there are less people around to minimize your contact with others. If you are physically fit and healthy, your body will be stronger and better able to fight a virus.
  • Get enough sleep.

Talk to a professional. There are behavioral counselors who are there to help you with those overwhelming feelings of anxiety. This is something that you can control.