As uncertainty rises about the continuing spread of coronavirus, many of us may begin to feel a sense of vulnerability. With the heightened media attention, a wide range of thoughts, emotional reactions and behaviours, including an increased sense of anxiety and risk, can arise. Feeling anxious or stressed about the spread of the virus is perfectly normal. Professor Baruch Fischhoff, an expert in public perception of risk, explains that we tend to worry more about new viruses that we have a poorer understanding of than more familiar ones like the seasonal flu. You or someone you know may experience periods of:
- Worry, anxiety, panic
- Social withdrawal
- Hyper-vigilance to your body and health
- Feelings of helplessness
- Feelings of anger, irritability, or frustration
- Difficulties sleeping and concentrating
Keep things in perspective: Observe your thoughts and try to bring yourself back to what the situation is at present.
Below are some helpful tips and strategies to manage any upcoming changes and cope with any emerging anxiety or fear around this new virus.
Unplug: while it’s important to keep yourself informed, it’s equally important not to obsess over the news. This could have the unintentional impact of increasing worry and fear.
Find credible sources of information: be careful where you get your news about Coronavirus from in order to avoid fear and panic caused by misinformation. Sources such as the World Health Organisation and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention do their best to gather up-to-date accurate, reliable information.
Keep things in perspective: Observe your thoughts. Are you having persistent thoughts that focus on worst-case scenarios (catastrophising)? Or ‘what ifs’? Try to bring yourself back to what the situation is at present.
Look after yourself: make sure you are getting a good night’s sleep, are doing exercise and eating healthy meals. These healthy habits are worth highlighting during times of uncertainty and can decrease your level of stress.
Try mindfulness and breathing techniques: these techniques can help you relax, manage your level of stress and keep things in perspective. Try the app ‘calm’.
As employers take precautions due to COVID-19, remote working will increase exponentially over the next weeks and possibly months. This will raise issues on both an individual and corporate level. We are working with our clients to ensure their workforce remain resilient and productive using resilience webinars and virtual impact coaching. Please get in touch for further details on how we can help your staff sustain high performance.