The year 2020 started with a pandemic that literally brought the world to its knees. The fear of contracting COVID-19 coupled with lockdown, loss of jobs, and financial insecurity adversely affected the mental health of people.
As the year progressed, more and more cases of anxiety, panic, and depression related to the pandemic came to the fore. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation report, in January 2021, 41.1 percent Americans reported anxiety and/or depressive symptoms compared to 11 percent in June 2019.
Fortunately, thanks to recent advancements in the field of psychology, there are simple steps that can make avoiding anxiety and working with a mental illness easier. Here are some tips that you can try.
- Plan the day to ensure structure: Creating one’s own schedule helps one organize the day. It also helps achieve tasks so that no deadlines are missed and things are prioritized rightly. Completing tasks, even minor ones, can help reduce the hopelessness one feels during depression and other mood disorders. However, set realistic goals so that they can be achieved effectively. Setting unrealistic daily goals often amounts to more stress and anxiety.
- Find what you need to be productive: This is easier said than done, but there are many small changes we can make to decrease the emotional difficulty level of being productive, such as wearing headphones, setting one’s phone to silent, taking medication in the morning versus at night, with or without food, etc.
- Stay away from triggers: Working with a mental illness can be like trying to grind out a productive day in a minefield. According to Dr. Serani, research confirms that stress overload not only intensifies symptoms of mental illness, but can also trigger relapses in individuals who are symptom-free. Being mindful of one’s triggers, whether they may stem from attempting to pack too many tasks into one day or interacting with certain areas, may avoid a spike in symptoms.
- Accept that a perfect day might not be possible: Although positive thinking definitely has its place in mitigating some mood disorders, overly positive thinking can lead to cognitive dissonance and feelings of being overwhelmed. Accepting that a perfect day devoid of any discomforting situations or negative emotions is not possible can alter the way one perceives and reacts to stress.
- Be healthier: Diet is one of the most overlooked factors in the treatment of mental health (not including diets of medication). Many simple dietary deficiencies can result in symptoms that look like depression, although can easily be remedied by adjusting one’s caloric calendar.
The workplace is a stressful enough environment for the 80 percent of “normal” people without psychological issues. Whether it is anxiety or depression, working with a mental disorder can be less of a hurdle by following one of the aforementioned tips.
Seeking help for anxiety
There are numerous causes of anxiety disorders. Anxiety can be a result of substance abuse, especially alcohol and benzodiazepine. Stress plays a significant role in the anxiety response, especially when coping skills are lacking. There is also evidence that genetics can contribute to anxiety disorders, including brain chemistry and personality. A traumatic event will often result in prolonged anxiety and in some cases lead to post-traumatic stress syndrome.
In case you know someone battling an anxiety disorder or who has symptoms that signify its presence, Anxiety Treatment Centers of California can assist. Our representatives can connect you with some of the best anxiety clinics in California that can offer customized plans to suit your treatment goals. Call us at our 24/7 anxiety treatment helpline 855-972-9459 or chat online with one of our experts to get complete details about credible anxiety treatment centers in California.