Amanda Phoon Nguyen
Are you ok?
Hi all. Like most things COVID-19 related, things are changing to rapidly and it can feel like working with quicksand, with rapidly evolving and quickly changing circumstances. So many are grappling with the logistics of temporarily closing their practice, learning more about the government stimulus packages, and tackling home schooling, amongst the other monumental tasks that are our new reality. No wonder stress levels are high!
I wanted to reach out to my friends and colleagues and ask, “are you ok?" My goals for the next few weeks are to check in with colleagues, offer a warm (virtual) hug and a listening ear.
Here are some of the things I have found has helped me:
1. Learning to identify the signs of stress
-feelings of constant worry, anxiety and being overwhelmed
-mood swings or quick changes in mood
-irritability or having a short temper
-changes in appetite
-changes in your sleeping habits
-dependence on alcohol or substances to relax
-somatic symptoms such as diarrhoea, constipation, muscle pains, nausea or dizziness
-loss of sex drive
2. A gratitude journal
-We are grateful for the love and support of our families
-We are grateful for the opportunity to re-evaluate our priorities
-We are grateful for the acts of kindness we see in our community
3. Limiting your exposure to social media
If seeing updates on the current situation and the COVID19 pandemic around the world, please remember that the situation in Australia is not the same
-News articles and social media posts feature the most dramatic elements. This is skewed and may keep your anxiety levels high
-Establishing boundaries is important
4. Establishing social media boundaries
-You can mute friends, unfollow pages, leave discussions or leave groups on social media
-You can also uninstall social media apps like Instagram
-You can check smartphones for the total time spent on social media as an idea of your habits
5. Creating a routine
-This will aid sleep, mindset and much more
-Going to bed and waking up at a regular time can help establish routine
-Being dressed as you would if you were leaving for work or school will also help with a routine
6. Maintaining regular habits
-Avoid the temptation to graze at home
-Occasional treats are fine, but maintaining physical activity and health eating habits are important for your mental health
7. Check in with your friends and family
-We like Facetime, Zoom, Skype and House party for video chats!
Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy this flowchart on changing mindset. Sending everyone my sincere well wishes.
"You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you.” ~Dan Millman