Stressed Out? Social Distancing Tips
Here is a list of daily check-in reminders/coping skills you can use during the current uncertain times we are facing:
Schedule connection with others (facetime, phone calls, watching a movie or tv show at the same time and then chatting about it after, playing online games together, sending each other videos, etc). Not being able to see friends can be a trigger of low mood -- manage this trigger by intentionally scheduling time!
Move your body/get outside! Take a 5 minute walk, out and back. Search for a stretching or movement video on YouTube. Turn on your favorite song and practice dance therapy. Commit to moving your body *at least* 5 minutes at a time, several times a day.
Manage your media consumption. Stay informed, but set limits--pick 1 or 2 reputable news sources to check, limit the amount of time you devote to news.
Be intentional about your schedule, including sleep. Aim for 7-8 hours total. Set an alarm to avoid spending many hours in bed (i.e. force yourself to get up, change scenery every 30 minutes - hour). Try to wake up and go to sleep at a consistent time.
For those of you working from home, make it a point (at least some of the time) to get up and get ready like you are going somewhere, even if you're not! Taking a shower and putting on regular clothes (other than lounging attire) can help you feel better.
Set small goals to accomplish tasks. Accomplishing a task (i.e. folding laundry) can help us feel positive and promote motivation to engage in other activities. Encouraging ourselves to do any activity, even when we don't feel like it, can yield benefits and improve our mood.
Balance tasks and rewards. Reward yourself after a task by scheduling time to relax. If you set aside time and *plan* relaxing activities, you're more likely to enjoy the experience because you have given yourself permission to relax during a specific time.
Practice gratitude. List the things, big or small, that you are thankful for in order to balance out some of the stressors you may be experiencing. The idea is to remember that things are not all good, or all bad right now--there is almost always a balance between the two, if we let ourselves take time to see it.
Use grounding /mindfulness techniques to reduce anxiety/stress. Practice deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery, meditation, 5-4-3-2-1 sensory technique, etc. If you haven't practiced these in a session yet, a Google search should help provide basic resources for applying these techniques.
Please reach out for support, we have online sessions available!