What to Do when World Events are Making you Feel Anxious and Overwhelmed
Like most people around the planet you will probably have had a lot to deal with over the past couple of years from trying to navigate life with a mutating virus and all the upheaval, uncertainty and stress that has brought to living with the looming catastrophe of climate change and worrying images from around the globe. Now on top of everything else you are also bombarded by unsettling scenes of a war in Ukraine causing innocent people to suffer and the 'fear' virus is spreading at a rapid rate. All this builds up over time and so it is no surprise if your mental, emotional and physical well-being are starting to suffer.
If you are sensitive in nature or even empathic then some of the news reports can be hard to process without leaving you feeling anxious, overwhelmed, distraught, powerless and completely drained as a result. First of all please know that if this is you then you are not alone and it is times like these when you need a few coping strategies to allow you to carry on with your life without being in a constant state of overwhelm and exhaustion.
Below are some tips to help you.
Acknowledge your feelings
Firstly acknowledge your feelings, don't push them down as this will result in problems later on. It is ok to feel the way you do. If you are feeling emotional, sad, upset, anxious or even angry then allow yourself to process those feelings in your own time. You are only human.
Look for action
Is there any action you can take to help the situation? This can be anything from volunteering, joining a group of like minded individuals to brainstorm ideas, to smaller things you can do at home. Taking some form of action no matter how small will help you feel less powerless and overwhelmed. If climate change is at the top of your worry list then you may want to create your own climate change action (check out the course here which has a specific section to help you). If you feel there is nothing you can do then accept that.
Talk to a like minded friend
Talking to a friend about how you are feeling can really help as you realise you are not alone and you will probably find that they have similar thoughts and feelings. Even if you don't share the same feelings it can still help to voice your thoughts and worries.
Have regular mini breaks
Including regular mini breaks into your day to find stillness and re-connect with yourself for a few minutes is vitally important in helping to keep you centred and grounded and better able to cope. Take a moment to be quiet and look out of a window without distractions or sit in a garden or green space for a few minutes to allow your nervous system to re-set.
Limit exposure to bad news stories
It is good to know what is going on in the world but don't allow bad news stories to bombard you as this will keep your sympathetic nervous system active, releasing more stress hormones into your body. Maybe consider keeping a check on news stories once or twice a day to get the main headlines of what is going on.
Make sure you are taking care of yourself
When you are feeling anxious and overwhelmed your self care can suffer as your focus is elsewhere. Make sure you are including some form of exercise into your routine – a quick walk in nature can work wonders for your mind, body and spirit. Do things you enjoy, eat healthily, meditate, practice yoga or qi-gong and try to get plenty of sleep.
Maybe consider investigating some self help therapies to support your health and wellbeing and help you feel better able to cope with life. Aromatherapy is a good one to help maintain emotional balance and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Also learning how to meditate could be the best gift you could give yourself in troubling times. You can check them both out on the links below.
If you want a way to support your mental health and emotional wellbeing then journaling your thoughts, feelings and emotions can also help. You can download your FREE One Month Journal below or here.
Holistic Health and Wellness Coach
Information provided for general educational purposes only and not intended to replace medical advice