We’ve been told the importance of taking a deep breath and how it can greatly impact our mental and physical well being. Perhaps there’s no better time than today to practice what that really means. As a society we have been forced to slow down, to stay at home, and to focus on the primary needs we have as individuals.
Lynda Rupke, LLPC, one of our ARC Facilitators, shares five tips on how we can help ourselves during this time.
- Radically acknowledge and accept this is going on. We are all in this together.
- Keep a list of what you are grateful for. Her example, “I am grateful for the time to embrace the slower pace of life because it gives me time to catch up on projects that I have wanted to do. It helps me put in perspective that many things I tend to worry about really don’t matter that much.”
- With a grateful heart and a slower pace, perhaps I can do something nice for someone else.
- If you aren’t feeling great, figure out what makes you escape negative thoughts and do THAT thing. Even if it’s only for five or ten minutes.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself.
Alan Carriero, ARC Facilitator, likes to remind us “All I can do is all I can do. And all I can do IS enough.”
While the ARC Facilitators do not offer professional therapy through the Center many do have separate private practices and are seeing clients at this time. You can connect with them here: Meet Our Facilitators. To find their contact info, click on their photo and then click on the top right corner “visit website.”
Valuable Online Resources
The four sites listed below offer mental health resources that might be helpful to your or your families:
Calm: Let’s Meet This Moment Together
Tamara Levitt, Head of Mindfulness
Many of us are feeling anxious as we navigate the uncertainty of COVID-19. Calm.com feels it too. On this page full of free resources, Calms share tools they’re using: guided meditations for adults and kids, calm music, sleep stories, movement videos, meditation classes, and grounding exercises. “It’s common to fast forward into an unknown future and play out worst-case scenarios in our mind. The antidote is to bring awareness to our thoughts and emotions and return to presence. This helps recenter and stabilize us in times of uncertainty.” read more »
PBS: Why Your Mental Health May Be Suffering In The COVID-19 Pandemic
Laura Santhanam, Writer
The PBS NewsHour asked experts for advice about how to manage the stress of life during the COVID-19 pandemic and explains why social distancing is important right now as well as what can be done to help with mental health. Despite social distancing, “we have opportunities to deepen our relationships,” says Dr. Lynn Bufka, a psychologist and expert on stress and anxiety with the American Psychological Association. read more »
PsychCentral: Affirmations for Difficult Times
Sharon Martin, LCSW
Sharon Martin shares a list of realistic and authentic affirmations to help with stress and anxiety. “Telling yourself that you’re full of peace and joy when you’re actually full of tension and worry, probably isn’t going to feel true or helpful. Instead, try to acknowledge your situation and feelings (that you feel stressed and anxious) and focus on how you want to cope — what you want to think, feel, and do in response.” read more »
Hey Sigmund: What to Say to Help Kids Feel Calm When the World Feels Fragile
Karen Young, Psychologist
Psychologist/writer Karen Young shares expert tips to help kids feel calm and their feelings acknowledged. She shares, “when times feel uncertain or your own anxiety feels big, come home to the things that make sense. Come home to each other, to stillness, to play, to rest, and conversation. Come home to listening more openly and caring more deeply, to nature, and warm baths, and being more deliberate, to fight for what we can control, and the soft surrender to what we can’t.” read more »
For a full list of updated COVID-19 resources, please visit our Helpful Links section on our website and click ‘Coronavirus and Mental Health.’
We are truly in this together.