MANAGING ANXIETY

Gospel Care

Tips & Resources

In the midst of a health crisis, it is a normal response to experience some level of fear and anxiety. However, anxiety was never meant to rule our lives. Here are some helpful tips and resources to manage our anxiety:

Manage Your Media Diet
- Check media only 2-3 times a day with trusted resources, such as the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization.
- Don't avoid news entirely, but tone down your exposure to media.
Stick to a Routine
- Creating and following a new routine can be calming and grounding for many people.  It is a great way to create stability during a time of rapid change.
- Make scheduled time for breaks, meals, and obtaining enough sleep, even if you are telecommuting for work.
Look Out and Support Others Around You
- When you support others, it provides a sense of purpose that brings joy and life.
- Rather than facing the situation in isolation, it is important to remember that we are all in this together and stay connected with loved ones using telecommunication.
- Focus on things that are within your control, rather than focusing on things that feel out of control.
- Clean your hands for the sake of others in addition to yourself.
Mindfulness, Gratitude, and Christian Contemplative Practices
- Both mindfulness and gratitude can be powerful ways to disengage from distressing thoughts.
- Use a mindfulness app like:
Stop, Breathe, Think
UCLA Mindful
Relax melodies: Sleep sounds
- Practice meaningful prayer and reflection. For instance, you can reflect upon a time when God came through for a friend or loved one or meditate on what brings you gratitude and comfort. Through prayer and reflection, you can experience and be reminded of God's presence.
- Modern contemplative practices help us know, experience, and be transformed by the love of God.
- Sabbath - make sure to practice rest. Rest is one of the most powerful ways to strengthen our immune systems and recover from the demands of life. Rest is a form of active resistance to a culture demanding us to keep up or be left behind.
Find Time to Take Breaks
- Discover or rediscover games, movies, or activities that will move your focus off things raising your anxiety.               
- Engage in a physical activity. Regular aerobic exercise has shown to decrease levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem.
- Practice calming deep breathes.
1. Take a long, slow breath in through your nose, first filling your lower lungs, then your upper lungs
2. Hold your breath to the count of "three."
3. Exhale slowly through pursed lips, while you relax the muscles in your face, jaw, shoulders, and stomach.
Utilize helpful websites that have anxiety resources like: