Do not suffer alone, develop a daily routine

The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) has said that people who are feeling overwhelmed, anxious and afraid during this time of Covid-19 need to learn new ways to cope and manage stress.

Sadag said it is normal that people will feel anxious and scared because it is difficult to escape what is happening in the country and globally relating to the coronavirus pandemic.

“Everyone reacts differently to the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19) and it may be extremely stressful for many, especially those who already have a mental health issue, but even those without a predisposing illness feel stressed and anxious during this time — it is completely normal to feel that way considering the situation,” the organisation said in a statement.

“Fear, panic and anxiety about the coronavirus can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children.

“It’s important that you, the people you care about, and your community learn new ways to cope and manage the stress.”

Sadag suggested ways to keep sane. These include: maintain a daily routine, spend less time listening and watching the news, have dedicated times to check respected sites for reliable information and acknowledging feelings of fear and frustration.

“Acknowledge that and allow yourself specific time to sit with those feelings — and then make sure you focus more time on the things you can control and do. Create a list of things to do to keep yourself busy and active even during social isolation,” the organisation said.

Sadag also suggested that it should be part of your daily routine to talk to friends and family because a “sense of connection and a feeling of community is essential for hope.” and healing”.

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Bongekile Macupe
Bongekile Macupe is an education reporter at the Mail & Guardian.

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