It is very common to experience feelings of worry, anxiety and distress related to the current outbreak of novel coronavirus Coronavirus (COVID-19). You may be concerned about your own well-being, your loved ones, travel restrictions and how the situation is being covered in the media
People may experience a wide range of thoughts, feelings and reactions feeling scared, frustrated or irritable, difficulty concentrating and/or sleeping, sense of loss of control, withdrawing from others and usual activities.
Honour your feelings
It’s very understandable to experience emotional reactions like anxiety, distress, overwhelm worry or anger. Allow yourself to notice and express these feelings. Helpful strategies include writing them down, talking to others, express them creatively or engage in contemplative practices like mindfulness or meditation.
Watching your thoughts
Are you prone to unhelpful thoughts? Be aware of what are catastrophizing thoughts based on unrealistic worries? Or are you able to look at facts based on credible sources?
https://gisanddata.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6 (John Hopkins University tracks corona cases around the world)
Things you can control
If you are worried about your own well-being it may be worthwhile to complete a self-assessment guide, here is one from the University of Newcast:
Stick to your healthy routines
Looking after your basic needs is vital. Making sure you eat a balanced diet, get enough sleep, exercise, connecting with family and friends and engaging in pleasurable activities. Anxiety and the release of stress hormones can weaken our immune system and exacerbate physical symptoms. Breathing and mindfulness techniques can help you relax:
Think about where you are getting your information from
Are the reports sensationalising the situation and scaremongering? Or do you feel they are reporting responsibly and with balance? As with all resources, do remember it is important to assess:
- The source itself and their goals
- How the data and findings are described
- What has been reported, and what has not; and
- The quality of the information
Notice how you react when listening to the news. Does it increase your anxiety levels? If so you might want to set limits around news and social media.
Information about Covid-19
Covid-19 in the indigenous community: https://www.ahmrc.org.au/coronavirus/