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April 16, 2020

Feeling Overwhelmed By COVID-19?

Shift Team

A man sitting on a bench with a mask on looking at his cellphone with headphones on.

When Your Overwhelmed

Feeling overwhelmed by all the information coming in about COVID-19? The uncertainty of life as you know it? The changes in your daily routine?

How about by the plethora of messages about how you could or should be spending your time? Should you use it to be productive? Learn a new skill? Start a new business? Reach out to everyone in your social network? The list goes on and on…

Here are 3 tips for how to manage when you’re feeling overwhelmed during what is—it’s important to continue to remind ourselves—a stressful and uncertain time:

  1. Find your flow state: Find one thing that helps you to disconnect from the news, social media, work or school, or whatever else is hard to shake off. It should be something that helps you to be mindful, focused and calm. This might be reading a light-hearted book, listening to music, taking a walk (while keeping a safe physical distance, of course!), playing a game, taking a bath, baking, drawing, painting, or whatever else really allows you to get into a flow state. Ideally, this doesn’t involve a screen. Make sure when you do this to set boundaries for yourself and others, i.e. really put your phone away, or let others know you will not be available during this time.
  2. Let go: Let go of any expectations of what tomorrow is going to look like, what you should be doing or achieving during this time, how you “should” be feeling, etc. There is no right or wrong thing to do, feel, or be during this time. Use this time to practise tuning into your body and mind, to consider what you need moment-to-moment. Do you need a break? Do you need to release energy through physical activity? Do you need to connect with someone over video or phone? Be kind to yourself. You are adjusting to many new “normals” right now.
  3. Connect with others: Even when it has to be virtually, connecting with others can help to increase feelings of happiness, feeling understood and belonging, and it can decrease stress. Share your experiences. Share how you’re really doing with your friends, colleagues or family members that you trust. By sharing how you are doing and discovering that others share similar feelings, you’ll feel more connected and emotionally closer to others in your life.

This article was written by Lisa Schwartz during their time at Shift Collab.

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