Difficult Times and Life’s Ups and Downs
The current COVID19 situation and the current lockdown are causing a lot of stress and anxiety for many people. It is affecting some people more than others. When we encounter difficult situations, people tend to adopt different coping strategies. There are positive and negative coping strategies.
I would certainly recommend the positive coping strategies as you are more likely to have a better result and deal with the situation in a better way.
Positive Coping Strategies
When we are having a difficult time it is useful to have somebody to help you overcome your stress. Support works wonders for people in these situations. This can be things like: calling a friend; talking to your partner or spouse: set up a discussion group et cetera. Of course, in the current situation a lot of this is done using software programs such as: Zoom; WhatsApp; Email and other such programs. So if you’re feeling a bit down, talk to someone.
You will find that the person that you contacted, is properly feeling exactly the same way and is delighted with human contact and discussion.
It is also very useful just to practice journaling, writing down how we are feeling, our thoughts and fears. When we write these things down, we take them out of the emotional part of our brain and deal with them in the rational and logical part of our brain.
It may seem difficult to relax with all that is going on in the world at the moment, however daily relaxation practices are a great way to train your mind to stay calm in difficult times. Relaxation can take the form of: mindfulness and meditation; breathing relaxation; listening to music; reading a book et cetera.
Health is a crucial part of coping. If we are fit and healthy, we are more resilient and able to deal with difficult external situations. Yoga, Cycling, Walking and other forms of physical exercise help release endorphins in our body which makes us feel better.
Negative Coping Strategies
Escape and Avoidance
We sometimes are in a state of denial about what is happening. It is a good idea to accept what is happening in the world at the moment, and realise that there are certain things that you have no control over and certain things you do have control over i.e. yourself.
Some people tend to numb themselves by resorting to comforting habits like: excessive eating; watching too much television; spending too much time on the Internet and other social media. In addition, some people may numb themselves with alcohol, drugs and other substances.
We all need to review our coping strategies from time to time. My purpose in writing this blog is to just stimulate that thought process in all of us to ensure that we are not stepping into negative coping strategies and neglecting positive ones, which are more beneficial.
Life will always have its ups and downs, and we will always have to have to deal with difficulties and setbacks. It’s how we deal with them that determines our happiness.
So just think about it and see do you need to make any adjustments to your coping strategies. We should always try to be resilient, realistic and respond rather than react.