Wednesday 5th May
The Covid pandemic has affected everyone in so many ways and the biggest change that the country has had to go through is being under lockdown. The first UK lockdown was introduced in the spring of 2020, and this resulted in the whole country having to be restricted to stay at home to reduce and stop the spread of the Coronavirus. Recently it was announced that the covid restrictions will gradually start to be lifted. The gradual lifting of Covid anxiety has resulted in experiences of a post-lockdown anxiety which is also known as re-entry anxiety. Some people have reported concerns about going back to public spaces such as shops whilst others have reported worries about going back into an office environment.
Getting back to a previous way of life can feel daunting especially after having adapted to a different routine and a changed way of life. However, it is important to remember that it is normal to feel a sense of uncertainty when experiencing change and experiences of anxiety will vary from person to person. Below are some of the tips that are helpful for dealing with re-entry anxiety.
It is important to remember that it is normal feel some anxiety or uncertainty when we are going through change. Everyone experiences anxiety in different ways, and it is important to recognise that you are not alone in this experience.
Are you worried about what will happen when you go back into the office, go back to public spaces such as parks, shops, and restaurants?
Sometimes when we are faced with uncertainty, we try to reduce this by worrying about it. We may spend time thinking about each possible scenario and try to plan and prepare for each outcome. However, although we may think that worrying helps us to prepare and feel more in control, the act of worrying itself does nothing to reduce the risk of the potential negative effect happening. Worries about the future can intensify the level of anxiety feel.
We can reduce the unpleasant aspects of worry by dealing with worries in a more helpful way, which in turn reduces intensity in anxiety. We can real with our worries in a more helpful way by focussing on those things we can control, accepting and letting go of what we cannot control.
When we are anxious, we underestimate our ability to cope with situations and when we overestimate the danger, we can undermine our resilience. Recognising and developing our resilience can help us when to persevere, adapt to changes, and bounce back when we are faced with challenging circumstances.
It is important to remember that our mind does not tell us the truth when it overestimates the danger. In those moments of anxiety ask yourself whether your estimation of danger is factual or whether it is based on opinion. When in doubt, it is important to find out what the experts say about the danger because it is important to make decisions that are rational and based on facts, as well as evidence. Making rational and balanced decisions is more likely to benefit us in the long run. Avoidance on the other hand can lead to a spiral of anxiety.
It is a good idea to think back to the times when you have pulled through adverse situations and remember the strength and character you have built through situations. Remembering our strength and resilience can help us through difficult times and it is often character building.
Living life with purpose is about doing things that give us meaning. When we stop living with purpose, we start to lose life’s meaning. Some of the ways we can regain that purpose is by reconnecting with friends and family. It is about focussing on our health, by exercising and eating well. It is about doing the things that give us a sense of enjoyment and achievement, such as hobbies. Work and study are also important as part of having a meaningful daily routine.
It is important to reach out and speak to a friend or family member if you are really struggling. It is also important to seek professional help. Speak to a professional when overwhelmed by anxiety to point of being unable to cope. Please speak to your GP and seek professional help. If you find yourself in crisis, please ring the Samaritans helpline which is a free phone on 116 123. The helpline is open 24 hours a day 365 days of the year.« Back to News & Blog
Quality | Clinically focused | Flexible | Innovative