7 Tips to Relieve Anxiety and Stay Positive in 2020 (And Beyond)

Let's be real - 2020 has been a rough year.

Anxiety, stress, and feelings of depression have gone way up this year.

People have been stuck indoors. They've lost their jobs. Many are confused and nervous about what's going on around the world.

And with all the problems we've had, it's common to feel a little more down than usual.

If this is you, remember, you're not alone.

We recently polled our nurses about how COVID-19 affects them and we got a lot of varying answers, from not feeling affected at all to stress and anxiety levels skyrocketing.

If you're in the first group, awesome! This article will just be a good reminder or maybe even a tool to optimize your mental health.

If you're in the latter group, keep reading because this is definitely for you.

There's no doubt that all of us have been affected on some level.

So what can we do about this? Let's get started with 7 tips you can start right now!

1. If possible - get outside!

We'll start with the simple and to some, the obvious.

But with our increasingly indoor lifestyles between work and being inside more because of the virus, we often need a reminder.

So this is a very simple tip - just take some time to go outside.

Go out and exercise, read a book, whatever.. but please put down the screen for a little bit.

We know outside time doesn't always fit into our busy schedules, but be real. It's something so vital to our health we just have to do it.

Put it this way, nobody has ever gone out in nature and felt worse about their lives. It just has that healing effect on our souls!

P.S. If you aren't getting outside enough, make sure you're taking vitamin D.

It's crucial for many processes in the body, including a strong immune system!

2. Know that this will pass

All this coronavirus stuff is going to eventually go away.

Yes, the media is doing everything they can do to keep you scared.

That's their job, right?

But the confirmed cases have gone up largely because more people are being tested for the virus, and the death rate has since dropped.

Governments all over the world are taking this virus seriously.

We optimistically predict the virus will slow down and hopefully, over many months, go away!

3. Do something for yourself you wouldn't normally do

Turn the rest of the year into a positive.

Locked down? Focus on a personal development project.

Want to explore your own creativity? Dive into artwork?

Get in better shape?

Just want to watch more movies? (We feel ya)

Still, just do your best to focus on something productive.

When you're home you need something to do or you might drive yourself nuts.

So now may be the best chance you'll ever have to...

  • Work on that personal project you've been putting off
  • Get in better shape than ever with a home workout program
  • Connect with a friend you haven't talked to in forever
  • Spend more time talking to your parents
  • Watch that favorite series you haven't had time for until now

Anything to keep your mind off the news!

Just make sure you're getting in exercise as a part of it - it's not only healthy, but therapeutic as well!

4. Express Gratitude

To some this sounds cheesy - but we promise it's the real deal!

One of the best ways to to do this is just name three things you're grateful for, each day, when you wake up.

So remember, even during this tough time, remember that:

  • You still have a job (many lost their jobs)
  • You have a home, food, friends, and family
  • You're alive in an otherwise amazing era
  • You can walk, talk, and so forth

We take all of this for granted, but as we know from taking care of our patients, these things can be taken away.

Self reflection and gratitude are amazingly therapeutic - and very important during times like this.

One of the easiest ways to do this is to just name three things you're grateful for when you wake up.

You may say...

  • "I'm thankful for my health because despite the sickness, I feel good and strong."
  • "I'm thankful for my friends because they keep me sane in this time of stress."
  • I'm thankful I can walk...sadly many of my patients can't. No matter what happens, I have control over my own life."

These are all examples of course.

Try it, seriously!

5. Have Presence of Mind

Start inside yourself.

If you feel stressed - slow down. Pause.

Ask yourself - "why exactly am I so stressed?"

If it's from what you see on social media - have some presence of mind.

The violence and division on there stresses us too. Pause and stay away from social media for a little while - you'll feel a lot better.

If you've been inside too long, go outside and get some exercise - you'll feel amazing.

If you're stressed from work, well, focus on other things you can control, like your own health, diet, and exercise routine.

The point?

Figure out what the source is and address it head on.

6. Limit Social Media

Going back to the last point, remember that social media has a serious influence on our emotions.

It's crazy out there. World events, politics, whatever.

Social media narrows your mindset into believing that everything is crazy all the time, when in reality 99.9% of the world is otherwise pretty normal.

The division that you see in the news gets tons of attention, when most people in the real world aren't that divided.

We're not saying never read the news, or to totally avoid social media (we use it too, you know) but to instead limit it for your own mental health.

7. Take care of yourself

We can NOT repeat this enough.

Don't neglect taking care of yourself during this time! 

No matter what happens - you always matter.

Please don't let stress or anxiety stop you from eating right, getting exercise in, getting good sleep at night, and keeping in touch with friends and family!

It's very common to stop working out during tough times, when in reality it should be the exact opposite.

Not only is this important for general health, but this will help take your mind off the virus and the stress of other events as well!

And remember, your physical health and mental health go hand-in-hand.

When your physical health is on point, you simply feel better about yourself mentally.

You feel more confident, more important, and so on. 

Makes sense?


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Remember, when you take care of yourself, you feel better, and it's just an upward spiral of positivity!

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We hope this article helped!

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And always - stay safe, stay amazing, and as always...THANK YOU FOR WHAT YOU DO!

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