The Corona virus pandemic not just effected people physically over the last year, but also put a mental strain on teenagers and adults.
Here are some tips provided by Unicef to help you cope.
- Recognize that your anxiety is completely normal
If school closures and worrying headlines are making you anxious, you are not the only one. Actually, that is how you should be feeling.
“Psychologists have long recognized that anxiety is a normal and healthy function that alerts us to threats and helps us take measures to protect ourselves”, says Dr. Lisa Damour, expert adolescent psychologist, best-selling author and monthly New York Times columnist.
- Find a distraction
“Psychologists know that when people are in chronically difficult conditions it’s helpful to divide the problem into two categories: things they can do something about, and then things they can do nothing about”, says Dr. Damour.
- Focus on yourself
Have you wanted for a while now to learn to do something new, to start reading a new book, or to devote time to playing an instrument? Now is the time to do all that.
“I have been making a list of all the books I’ve wanted to read and all of the things I’ve wanted to do for some time now”, says Dr. Damour.
- Connect with your feelings
Missing events with friends, hobbies and sports is very disappointing. “These are major losses. They are very upsetting for all, including teenagers”, Dr. Damour says. What is the best way to deal with disappointment? Allow yourself to feel it. “When it comes to having a painful feeling, the only way out is through. Go be sad, and if you allow yourself to do it, you will feel better soon.”
Everyone processes their feelings in a different way. “Some children are going to make art, some are going to want to talk to their friends and use their shared sadness as a way to feel connected in a time when they can’t be together in person, and some children are going to want to find ways to get food to food banks”, says Dr. Damour. It’s important to do what you feel is right and useful.
- Be kind to yourself and others
Some teenagers are facing online bullying and violence due to coronavirus. “Activating bystanders is the best way to address any kind of bullying”, says Dr. Damour.