How to Cope with Anxiety

Helen Lee Schifter, long time promoter and connoisseur of health, wellness, and social media, has taken the opportunity during the COVID-19 pandemic to share some of her strategies and methods of managing anxiety when the world is a nearly constant source of turbulence and disruption. She offers many options that can be started a single step at a time to slowly adjust and further manage the adverse effects of change brought on by a global pandemic.

Her first recommendation is making a daily plan. A step by step plan to the day can offer structure even when people are not working or working from home. A daily plan does not mean that life becomes boring or mundane, but rather offers a guide for the day when the world’s lack of predictability can create anxiety. Make a daily plan that includes achievable goals that can offer a spot of achievement throughout each day. Examples could include nutrition and water goals, indoor or outdoor exercise, or mental health routines.

Once a daily routine has been planned out, include breaks. In an environment driven by productivity even when working at home, plan to take breaks from computers and phones to protect mental and physical health. Helen Lee Schifter recommends practices like Jin Shin Jyutsu, an indoor method of cleansing the body’s energy. Other methods she recommends include indoor exercise routines or finding a secluded area outside. This ensures protection from potential exposure to the COVID-19 virus, while still encouraging healthy habits. Following fitness routines of all kinds online can also be beneficial, from dedicated fitness apps like PopSugar, to routines published on broad base apps like YouTube and Facebook. Other exercise-based recommendations for management of anxiety include meditative exercises like yoga which have lots of variation within it to keep the mind and body stimulated.

Mental stimulation and change is also key in managing anxiety. Reading any topic of interest can offer mental stimulation and also an escape from the causes of anxiety by drawing people into another world.

A final recommendation for those struggling with anxiety is drinking tea. Tea ceremonies can provide a break and time for focused meditation while centering on the four pillars of traditional tea ceremony. Taking time to think on purity, tranquility, respect, and harmony while drinking tea in a calm, quiet, and dedicated space can provide a way to quell anxiety during the day. Even if a tea ceremony is not performed, taking a moment to drink tea can be part of the daily routine and offer a productive way to take a break. Tea is also full of antioxidants which help build the immune system and can increase the body’s natural ability to fight off infection, a key health concern during the pandemic.

It is important to keep in mind that change takes time and consistency. While none of these strategies are a miracle cure for anxiety, they can help manage increased symptoms brought on by current world events and increase resilience for the future.