The uncertainty many of us feel about the pandemic reminds me of the uncertainty many of us face in caregiving situations. We don’t know what’s going to happen next. According to this recent Washington Post article, uncertainty fuels anxiety and can leave us exhausted.
Here’s an interesting excerpt about being flexible in how you cope:
“[The] people who cope best with uncertainty are the ones who have a more flexible coping style. … ‘Sometimes fixing the problem is good, sometimes being proactive is good, sometimes managing your emotions with self-care is good, and in some cases even avoidance can be fine. But doing the same thing regardless of the situation is not going to work. In uncontrollable situations, focusing on what you can control, like your reactions, will be best.'”
A few strategies are shared, including:
- taking a day at a time
- breaking down the problem into its component parts and try to find ways to deal with those specific parts
- cognitive behavioral therapy
- viewing uncertainty as a challenge, rather than as a threat
Uncertainty fuels anxiety, causing your mind to conjure up scary scenarios. The pandemic can magnify the angst.
By Christie Aschwanden
September 12, 2020 at 7:00 a.m. PDT