Due to the global pandemic, we live in a time of a new “normal”. This year brought us unexpected experiences that have been pretty stressful. Because of this new disease, life became full of uncertainty with many people losing their jobs, abruptly changing their plans and more. Some of us haven’t seen our friends and families for a while and feel socially disconnected. These are all causes of an increase in stress and anxiety in our lives. During these times, we need to keep ourselves safe and protect our mental health as well.
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety is a reaction of your body to stress. When you’re anxious because of something, you may feel that your heart rate increases, your breathing is rapid, your concentration becomes unfocused, and your sleep gets disturbed. If you have these symptoms frequently, you may have an anxiety disorder.
An anxiety disorder is different than having anxiety. It is a group of illnesses and distress that can keep you from carrying on with your everyday life. According to the American Psychiatric Association, women are more often diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. For people who experience an anxiety disorder, the feeling of fear and worrying follows them all the time, not occasionally. If you think you have an anxiety disorder, be sure to discuss it with your doctor.
Ways To Cope With Anxiety
CaroQuilla’s founder, Maria Valencia, has incorporated many mechanisms into her life to deal with anxiety and reduce stress. Here are some of them:
- Visuals. When you feel anxiety building, have photos that remind you of things that you enjoy and love (pictures of sunsets, flowers, favourite places, your special life occasions and your loved ones). This will take your mind to a place of peace and happiness
- Regular exercise
- A clean diet. Try, as much as possible, to stay away from processed foods
- A regular bedtime and sufficient sleep
- Gratitude journaling
- Positive self talk. Program your mind to see yourself as a whole, able and good enough, just as you are
- Connect with others. Chat with people that you trust about your feelings and thoughts, set up regular check-ins to catch up
- Goal setting. Every night, before bed, write down your dreams and aspirations, and try to visualize them.
This last point is key. Maria knows that if her mind can convince her body that it is “under attack”, then her mind is powerful enough to convince her body that it is in a state of joy, love and comfort. Maria’s nightly visualization routine is her way of training her body to feel safe and at ease. In that state, she has a much better chance of applying reason to her thinking when she starts to feel anxious.
You Can Do It
Your mental health is as important as your physical health. Always remember to pay attention to your inner feelings. If you feel anxious, try to switch your attention to something positive in your life. But if you think that you can’t cope with it alone, don’t hesitate to contact a mental health counsellor.
Our CaroQuilla team sends you our support and wishes to stay safe and healthy in this challenging time.