Coping with COVID
It is okay to feel.
With all the uncertainty in the world right now because of the pandemic we are facing, your feelings may be all over the place. Each day is different from the next. Yet each day may seem like it is the same thing over and over. When will it end? How will it end?
- Some days bring about worries and cause you to feel anxious.
- Some days you feel isolated and depressed.
- Some days you may almost feel great.
- Some days you feel restless and bored.
Own your feelings but do not stress about them.
Take time to experience your feelings. It's good in fact, to acknowledge to yourself how you are feeling. Make time to think about your day and pinpoint what type of feelings you feel as a result. Keep a log of your emotions. Here is a great app that can help you track how you have been feeling.
Know that sometimes your feelings can make you feel uncomfortable.
Anxious thoughts may cause you to lose sleep, feel edgy or give you a headache. Sad thoughts might make you lose your appetite or zap your energy. It's important during these times to remember that you are not alone. You are normal. Sad things happen. Some days can be worrisome.
Embrace your feelings.
They are what make you, YOU. All humans have feelings and they can be messy. There can be highs and lows. Often teens, because of their life experiences and changing hormones feel things on a more intense level than adults do. The same emotional intensity that can cause you angst can also give you energy and enthusiasm.
Let your feelings out.
Try to remember that your mind was not designed to be a storage container for all of your emotions. If you hold too many emotions inside for too long, they intensify, become overwhelming, and can impact your mental and physical health. Journal your thoughts; reflect on what is causing you to feel the way you are feeling and focus on how it can be coped with or resolved. Give yourself a way to decompress.
Bottom line - Don't be afraid of your feelings.
They are part of you. Don't automatically assume that there is something wrong with you or that you have a mental health disorder. You are human. Humans were created with the ability to feel. We are also social beings, so quarantining and being cut off from others may make you feel alone.
During these stressful times, take care of yourself mentally and physically. Keep a regular routine--eat, sleep, and exercise. Be kind to others. If your feelings become overwhelming, reach out and talk to someone. If you start feeling a loss of control and your emotions are causing you to have thoughts of hurting yourself, get help right away so you can feel better. We are all in this together!