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How to overcome feelings of panic

Stress plays a significant role in our physical and mental health. As we face anxiety surrounding COVID-19, feeling some stress is inevitable. The good news is that there are ways to deal with anxiety and stress.

  1. Unplug (or plug in differently) - Think about how you're getting information and using it. It's good to be informed, but a continuous stream of news can do more harm than good. Choose one to two reliable sources and a set amount of time to view them each day. Otherwise, unplug the rest of the time.
  2. Don't feed anxiety - Think about what is really causing you anxiety and when you feel most anxious. Are you extra anxious after you have caffeine? After you've been on social media? When you are tired? If so, limit those triggers.
  3. Practice acceptance - You've set healthy boundaries but still can't shake stress? That's OK and normal. Accept what is occurring and realize you cannot control it all. Ask yourself what you can control and act on those things.
  4. Prioritize self-care - It's important right now to give yourself space to breathe deeply and exist. Take time for yourself. Go for a walk, watch a movie, make a playlist, take a bath or read a book. It's OK to just "be".
  5. Focus on your connection to others - Although we can't physically be near others right now, that doesn't mean we can't connect with them. Call a friend, write a note, video chat or send a card.

These are all great ways to let others know you are thinking of them and to connect with them. Take it day by day, but not alone. Don't forget there are other people in isolation, too. At the end of the day, find comfort in how you cared for or comforted someone, making the world a better place for both yourself and others.

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