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Combatting the Coronavirus Blues: Coping with anxiety during a pandemic

Updated: Apr. 22, 2020 at 10:43 PM CDT
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JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Social distancing and self-isolation can cause feelings of stress, anxiety, and fear. To help you at home beat the coronavirus blues, 3 On Your Side hears from mental health professionals with tips on how you can cope!

“There is a lot of hope to be found in not being alone.. or when we are really worried or really afraid,” said Chaplain Heath Ferguson, Director of Pastoral Care and Faith Relations for Baptist.

In life before the coronavirus pandemic, we spent time with friends and family, shopped at malls, and hit the gym.

But these days, life looks a little different.

Social distancing can take a toll on your mental health. That’s why Lead Therapist at Jackson State Universisty, Shanice White, wants you to know you’re not alone.

“There is just a lot of uncertainty, a lot of questions," she said. "Just know it is not uncommon for you to feel anxious. Just think about what we can control because we cannot control this pandemic!”

Most importantly, White suggests engaging in some type of self-care, whether that’s finding a new hobby or connecting with a friend.

“We can make phone calls, text and reach out to friends and set up virtual meetings.”

Another piece of advice: find a way to unplug and reset. White says taking care of your mental health should be a top priority.

Chaplain Heath Ferguson says it’s the unknown and uncertainty that can spark feelings of anxiety.

“Don’t give into too much social media," he suggests. "Get some exercise, connect with the ones you miss, facetime with the ones you love and tell them how you feel.”

Chaplain Ferguson says it's important to focus on the good.

“Take a deep breath, look around and try to stay in the moment and not worry about the ‘What Ifs’ too much.”

“Trouble doesn’t last always. When it seems like things have hit rock bottom, the only way to go is up!” said White.

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