Now that we are all learning to live with our “new normal,” with the Covid-19, it is so important to take this time to self-reflect. Ask yourself, “how am I doing?” and make sure to take notice and act when your stress level is beyond where it should be.

Many of you are working from home, managing kids’ online school, and actively using your primal skills, leaving your home only to venture out “hunting” for necessities. You are also dealing with employment uncertainties, reduced or eliminated hours or wondering what the next year will look like financially. Those of you who are working, whether at home or in the community, are dealing with many more hours of screen time, social isolation and daily change. Everyone experiences stress and uncertainty in different ways, and this is why it is it is so important that you allow yourself to be ok with whatever you feel. This is not the time to pass judgement on yourself or others.

Just remember, it is ok to not be ok. That is normal. Continuously check if your anxiety, depression or irritability symptoms are increasing, subsiding or remaining the same. Consider daily mental health check ins and talk about where you are at with others. Don’t worry about being the tough one in this situation, prioritize getting the support and interpersonal connection that helps you feel better. Minimize the use of alcohol and drugs, over eating and excessive social media binging, as it will catch up to you, resulting in feeling worse. Try to create a new routine at home, shower, get dressed, eat meals, stay hydrated, go for a walk, etc. Remember that everyone is affected by this, we all just cope differently.

Take this time to access mental health care, even if you have been putting it off. Many providers have wonderful suggestions and are there to just listen. They are almost all now offering an online option. Many insurances are waiving co-pays, so there may be no cost to you! You can access your care from the safety of your home. If you notice that you or a family member having extreme anxiety or depression, access your community crisis services or call 911. It never hurts to call in, they will help you decide if it’s a true emergency or not.

Lastly, Do your best to stick with the facts, source accurate information from sites such as such as the Center for Disease Control, The national institute of mental health and the Substance abuse and Mental Health Administration.

– Written by Elizabeth Rahamim, owner and CEO of Strategies for Success in Chandler, Arizona. She is a work-family-life expert and is a Professional Social Worker in Private Practice. Her information can be found here: www.StrategiesforSuccessAZ.com, and has been referenced as a Social Worker for the Middle Class.

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