In the current situation of Corona, a lot of people perceive massive stress due to uncertainty. We all had certain visions or expectations of the year 2020. No one knows how this situation will continue or end. The world seems out of control – you experience a dissonance. We need to accept the present and have to make the best out of the current situation.
Stress is like a short-term emergency program. This means that humans are not designed to be under stress for long periods of time. It can lead to illness and burnout. Stress is only beneficial for a short time. That is why we need strategies to better deal with our stress in this current Corona crisis which may take months.
But how do we do that? In the last DONE! virtual and free Round Table Jacob Drachenberg, a leading coach for healthy stress management and psychologist, has given some valuable advice how we learn to cope with our current fears and stress. We have summarised Jacob’s tips for you:
- The first step for improvement is basically consciousness. If you are aware of what is stressing you, then you can work with it and actively reduce the stress. Accept fear and negativity, but use this energy to concentrate e.g. on new hobbies such as DIY projects, sports or finally reading that book what you always wanted to read.
- Control what you can control: Understand what you can actually control such as how you react in a certain situation. Do not simply believe your subconscious evaluation of the Corona situation. Allow the fact that there will be things you cannot control, e.g. social distancing that is arranged by the government. When you have a clear understanding and a conscious attitude, your stressor will be less intense.
- To reinforce this, you should set yourself a limit of information and control the amount of information you let into your head. Decide beforehand how much news you want to receive, make a clear decision about useful and less useful sources and hide the rest. If you feel insecure, zoom out of the situation and focus on things that are still in place.
- Distinguish performance and outcome: In the current situation, there is a huge difference between both. Use a healthy stress level to push your performance further. But also allow yourself to take a break, slow down, think and react consciously to find the rhythm: push – de-stress – relax.
- Important to highlight, de-stressing and relaxing is not the same. One possible way to de-stress in times of Corona when working in home office is e.g. to built up routines by always setting up and down the workplace. Reading a book afterwards will increase your relaxation. Just try to find out which routines and activities work best for you. You can reframe the current situation, give it a new sense and therefore, change the perspective.
- Self-care: Breath. Think. Rethink. Talk with friends and family. Meditate. Eat nutritious food. Move. Take a short walk. Do a home workout or go for a run. Have (deep) conversations with friends. Be in the present – try to avoid thinking about the past and the future.
- You can even start journaling with the 4-minutes tactic of Jacob: Take 4 minutes a day to write down all your thoughts and answer the question: “What am I grateful for?”. You do not have the time for it? That is no excuse: 4 minutes a day are only 120 minutes per month and one day/year. Everybody can and should invest this time. This will positively affect your whole social environment and will even have more energy to support your friends and family.
These are all just suggestions. Do not let these suggestions put you under pressure either. Just because everyone suddenly starts doing yoga and home workouts does not mean you have to as well. Just do what feels good for you. Use this time to fully recharge your battery.
We are all in this situation together. The past has proven that humans are extremely adaptable. It shows where we are coming from and what we have reached so far. For us it is important that we support each other. Understand what stresses us out and work on it. Take time for yourself. We should use the energy that is triggered by stress to create a better version of ourselves or work on new projects or find a hidden talent or or or …
There are so many possibilities! And, we promise, there will be a time after Corona.
If you need further input or have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Marie (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Jacob (email@example.com).