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COVID -19 ANXIETY MANAGEMENT BLAST SERIES

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #1

BEWARE OF THE INCESSANT SCROLLING! 

Scanning headlines, flicking channels and scrolling Facebook? A constant stream of exposure about Coronavirus can keep us in a heighten state of anxiety….. Not to mention… the exposure of incorrect facts, misinformation and everyone else’s opinions and fear based thinking. 

Instead…. STOP scrolling but stay informed 

Be mindful about the Facebook groups you are following and the news articles you are reading….. are they REALLY helpful?

Instead stay informed with credible sources such as:

Australian Government Department of Health 

https://bit.ly/38OOwHe

And 

World Health Organization 

https://bit.ly/3cQUwCw

 

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #2

WATCH OUT FOR RABBIT HOLES!!

Don’t be like Alice and fall down a rabbit hole…. The rabbit hole of WORRY….

You know the one…. 

The one filled with …

What If’s…..

Mind reading 

Catastrophizing …..

Making assumptions……

And worse case scenarios 

I am NOT saying be ignorant…….NO be informed and be prepared

Just keep in mind that:

1: We often OVERESTIMATE the likelihood of something happening 

2: We often OVERESTIMATE how bad things might be if they do happen

3: We often UNDERESTIMATE our ability to cope with them if they do happen 

In times of uncertainty and unpredictability we are far more likely to feel anxious and stressed and it is VERY easy to fall down the rabbit hole of worry…. we should stay informed and plan…. Be PROACTIVE not REACTIVE 

 

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #3

PRACTICE PHYSICAL DISTANCING BUT STAY CONNECTED

The term social distancing does not mean social isolation….. In fact ….. think of it more like Physical Distancing….

In times of uncertainty and anxiety we need to maintain social connections….. This might just look a bit different.

Work meetings becomes Skype meetings

Playgroups become virtual playdates

Friday night drinks now become FaceTime Drinks 

Remember the times of pen pals??

And ….Therapy sessions become online sessions …. With the added benefit of wearing comfy pants….:) 

 

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #4

ACTION!

Taking appropriate, proactive action toward prevention helps to keep anxiety at bay. Taking action helps us feel more in control of the things we have control over.

The World Health Organization recommends a number of protective measures against the coronavirus, including to: 

  • wash your hands frequently
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • stay at home if you begin to feel unwell until you fully recover
  • seek medical care early if you have a fever, cough or experience  breathing difficulties. 

 

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #5

TAKE TIME TO FIT YOUR OWN OXYGEN MASK…

Whether or not you like it… The saying “You Can’t Take Care of Others Unless You Take Care of Yourself First” rings true…. Especially now, in this time of uncertainty. 

Everyone is different when it comes to self care, you just need to find what works for you and make sure you do it!

Examples: 

  • maintaining good social connections and communicating
    openly with family and friends
  • making time for activities and hobbies you enjoy
  • keeping up a healthy lifestyle by eating a balanced diet,
    exercising regularly, getting quality sleep and avoiding the use
    of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs to cope with stress
  • practising relaxation, meditation and mindfulness to give your
    body a chance to settle and readjust to a calm state. 

 

COVID-19 – ANXIETY MANAGEMENT – BLAST #6

REACH OUT

If you feel that the stress or anxiety you or your child experience as a result of the coronavirus is impacting on everyday life, a psychologist may be able to help. 

Psychologists are highly trained and skilled in providing effective interventions for a range of mental health concerns, including stress. A psychologist can help you manage your stress and anxiety using techniques based on the best available research. 

It can be tempting to put things like your mental well being on “hold” during times of stress. However, the opposite is true. This is the time to ensure you are receiving to best possible support for your emotional and mental health. 

Many Psychologist are now offering psychology services via secure online platforms or telephone so that you do not need to travel to see a psychologist. Ask your psychologist or GP for details. 

 

Stay Safe, Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands… We are all in this together

Melissa Johnson
Psychologist | Mindset Coach | Keynote Speaker

 

Melissa Johnson, is an experienced clinician and the director of Thriving Minds Psychology Clinic based in the heart of the beautiful Sunshine Coast, QLD. Melissa has extensive experience  treating a full range of clinical conditions including: anxiety, stress, burnout, depression, bipolar, trauma and PTSD, obsessive disorders and pain management. Melissa has a special interest in postnatal adjustment, anxiety, stress, professional burnout and behaviour change and habit formation. She works with families in the perinatal period who are trying to conceive, progressing through pregnancy and adjusting to  a new born baby.  And with busy professionals experiencing chronic stress and anxiety, burnout and struggling to establish the elusive work life harmony. She is passionate about using her skills and experience to educate and inspire and create long term change both in therapy and as a writer and keynote speaker.  

If you would like to book an appointment with Melissa you can call our clinic on P: 0428 088 671 or email on admin@tmpclinic.com.au

 

Anxiety, Stress and Overwhelm in the Modern Day!

Anxiety, Stress and Overwhelm in the Modern Day!

One quarter of Australians will experience an anxiety condition in their lifetime.

Affective disorders (such as Depression) have been the most common diagnosed mental health disorder for many years

However, some recent studies are finding Anxiety disorders to be fast becoming the most prevalent diagnosed mental health disorder. 

I have definitely witness this increase in the number of clients presenting with anxiety in my clinic. 

And many more who are experiencing high levels of stress and overwhelm and are at risk of burnout.

Many presentations of anxiety are now occurring in high functioning individuals, who continue to maintain their employment and function, however, experience significant levels of anxiety and stress, impacting their life and are at risk of burnout.

I am often asked WHY? 

Why are we experiencing increasing levels of anxiety, stress and overwhelm?

I honestly believe it is due to a number of factors.

Our society has seen rapid change and development over the last two decades, arguably more than any previous time in history. 

We are now more accessible than ever. We are busier than ever. We multitask more than ever. We have higher expectations of ourselves and others. Anxiety, Stress and Overwhelm in the Modern Age!

And our brain and body can not keep up with this new way of living. 

We have forgotten how to stop, pause, and be… without our devices, without all the busyness. The busyness that we now wear like a badge of honour. 

Before mobile phones ….. we would stop at a stop light and pause, look around, notice the trees, listen to the music. Now, we pick up our phone… we text, check emails or socials, we busy ourselves.

I see a profound change in our cognitive, emotional and behavioural state all born from anxiety, stress and expectations to be more. Often, integrating small behavioural habits and cognitive change can lead to significant positive change in emotional state and wellness. e.g Mindfulness, diaphragmatic breathing, time management and cognitive flexibility.

Melissa Johnson
Psychologist | Mindset Coach | Speaker

Melissa Johnson, Principal Psychologist and Director of Thriving Minds Psychology Clinic, a private psychology clinic based in Buddina in the heart of the beautiful Sunshine Coast, QLD. Melissa has extensive experience  treating a full range of clinical conditions including: anxiety, depression, bipolar, trauma and PTSD, obsessive disorders and pain management.  She has a particular interest working with families in the perinatal period who are trying to conceive, progressing through pregnancy and adjusting to  a new born baby.  And with busy professionals experiencing chronic stress and anxiety, burnout and struggling to establish the elusive work life harmony. If you would like to book an appointment with Melissa you can call our clinic on P: 0428 088 671 or email on admin@tmpclinic.com.au

Take Ten Breaths!

Take 10 Breaths

Practicing to breathe effectively can be extremely beneficial in times of stress and anxiety. Why? Because re-regulating the breath helps to communicate to the brain that we are not under threat. This helps to “turn off” the fight and flight survival mechanism responsible for the stress / anxiety response. Once this is switched off we can then engage our frontal lobes, helping us to problem solve and think logically. However, it’s best to practice daily. Even if it’s just ten breaths a day.

Enjoy!

1. Take ten slow, deep breaths. Focus on breathing out as slowly as possible until the lungs are empty – allow them to refill by themselves
2. Notice the sensation of your lungs emptying, notice them refilling, notice your rib cage rising and falling
3. allow your thoughts to come and go as if they are cars passing by
4. Expand your awareness: notice your breathing and your body. Then look around and notice what you can see, hear, smell, touch and feel

Reference: Russ Harriss 2009-www.actmadesimple.com

 

Melissa Johnson

Principal Psychologist/ Director

Thriving Minds Psychology Clinic