As the world continues to cope with the reality of Coronavirus many of us are struggling to manage our thoughts, feelings, jobs, finances, relationships and anxieties. This page will help you identify some coping strategies and resources to deal with stress, anxiety, or uncomfortable emotions during a time of uncertainty and unpredictability. Please note, the resources listed below is in no way an exhaustive list. This list was generated as a starting point for individuals, couples and families to begin developing their own thoughts and ideas about coping during these unprecedented times. Coping with the stressors of life is in noway one size fits all. Find what works for you, leave the rest.
Coping with Coronavirus
Dr. Cecelia Baldwin
As Coronavirus continues to circle the globe, many of us are afraid of our own and our loved ones' safety. Many of us find ourselves pinching pennies to make rent, pay bills, and provide support to our families and loved ones. We are forced to put our work (and potentially income) on hold to suddenly provide 24/7 childcare while keeping up a job, homeschooling, caretaking, and socially isolating. (All of that and I haven't even mentioned the fact that many of us were struggling to cope with life's traumas long before Corona. But that's another topic for another day).
Here are the facts: We are living through a global pandemic and our nervous systems are stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed. Stress and anxiety are natural and normal reactions our bodies go through when we experience a significant or unexpected change in our lives. Stress can manifest in physical, mental, or emotional ways, and can significantly impact one’s quality of life when left unmanaged. We need to learn to recognize the signs of stress or overwhelm in our lives, so that we can manage our stress-related reactions more effectively. This will give us opportunities to develop coping strategies that support the stabilization of our nervous system.
Managing mental health during Covid-19 can involve a number of techniques. Some require the intervention of trained mental health professionals; others can be done by the individual as part of a regular program of mental health hygiene. For the vast majority of people, managing mental health involves a combination of therapy and endeavors they can do on their own. Things that people can do on their own to improve their mental health include:
Reaching out for help.
If you are struggling to reach out to friends and family, consider using an alternate resource. Many national and local agencies are offering free or low cost resources to help navigate anxiety and distress during this time. Click the links below for more information.
Crisis Text Line is free, 24/7 support for those in crisis. Text 741741 from anywhere in the US to text with a trained Crisis Counselor.
NAMI support groups are peer-led and offer participants an opportunity to share their experiences and gain support from other attendees.
Consulting with a Mental Health Professional
One of the most common ways to manage mental health is to consult with and work with a mental health professional. MHPs may focus on one area of mental health, such as grief or stress and anxiety, or may focus on helping certain demographic groups, such as children, the elderly, or families. if you are looking for support from a MHP, blow you will find a list of resources that offer virtual, free or cost effective support and resources. * ALERT: In response to COVID-19 Insurance companies are paying for online therapy.
Psychology Today is a resource to browse & find profiles of verified Pennsylvania therapists.