Coronavirus and your mental health

Covid 19, commonly known as Coronavirus is all over the world and the relevant authorities are doing as much as they can to deal with it.

Many people are understandably apprehensive or worried. Most of us want to try and fix things. In the absence of an obvious solution, many of us will be feeling anxious.

In some circumstances and situations there is very little we can do, but we do have a modicum of control over how we react to those circumstances and situations.  

There is a balance between being acceptant, rationally informed and taking appropriate actions or exaggerating things and becoming senselessly anxious. Stop, consider and contemplate. 

Try to avoid gossip and look up trustworthy sources on the outbreak. Having reliable information about the virus can help you feel more in control. You can get up-to-date information and advice on the virus here:

“Rumour and guesswork can fuel anxiety. Do not use social media for information.”

However, it’s probably prudent to use social media for support, especially if you are in self isolation or actually contagious. At times of stress, we work better in company and with support. Try and keep in touch with your friends and family and carry on communicating.

Try not to sensationalise things or be dramatic when communicating. Avoid spiralling into panic by trying to stay calm. If you are ruminating and anxious, chatting to a therapist can help to talk things through and place things appropriately. 

This virus is obviously not a good thing, but please do not catastrophise; it will not last forever. It is probably a good idea to stick to your daily routine, where at all possible with a ‘business as usual’ attitude. 

Try to exercise and eat healthily and keep the whole issue in perspective subject to how it is directly and genuinely affecting you. 

We are all in this together and we need to take actions for the overall good, individually and collectively. 

Most of us will experience sadness because of Covid-19 related events. Support others and yourself empathically and please remember, while this episode is seriously tough it is exceptional, it is unique, and it will not last forever.

In light of Covid 19, therapy sessions will be held via Skype, Facetime, WhatsApp, or telephone, as opposed to face to face appointments.

Shane Lutkin, Lead Psychotherapist, Emotionalskills 

07986 488690

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