How do you take care of yourself during these difficult times? Here are some suggestions from a trauma-based psychotherapist.
1. Remind yourself that you are safe.
It is very difficult to feel safe, when there is so much going on. Anxiety goes rampant. You feel overwhelmed. You feel insecure. These are all normal feelings! Your reactions are normal reactions to an extraordinary event.
Remind yourself that you ARE safe. You might not FEEL safe—which is different—but you ARE safe.
You ARE safe.
You might not FEEL safe.
You ARE safe.
Your community; your police; your government; and your support systems in your community are all a working together to fight these horrible people.
2. Ground yourself.
When your anxiety runs rampant, you can experience the following symptoms:
-feeling like you’re losing control
To help these symptoms, this quick grounding activity can help tremendously. Here are some links to some of my favourite videos to help ground yourself, and reconnect to your body.
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It is very difficult not to get completely absorbed into the news. News agencies give you the latest updates, the emerging details, and helps to provide comfort when the perpetrators are caught. We try to seek answers when there are very few. We look to people who are on the scenes, and we look to provide us information to help us settle our fears down (but see tip #1).
However, we must remember, that while media is there to educate, but also to obtain ratings. Sensationalism, statements like “reports on the ground” (when often times there is no substantial evidence), and photos/coverage of suffrage of people become commonplace. While we may appreciate that this is happening on the ground, it is not helpful for our mental health and wellbeing; in particular to empaths.
Do yourself a huge favour; take a break from the news. Limit television viewing, internet news coverage, and reading articles on news apps. Your mental health will thank you.
4. Seek support
Know you are not alone in feeling overwhelmed with everything happening in the world today.
Take comfort in the fact that many people are seeking support in their community, with their social support networks, and with professionals (i.e. doctors, psychotherapists, counsellors, religious leaders/elders, etc).
Secure support from whomever you feel you can trust. If you’d like, I offer a free, 30 minute consultation in person or over Skype. Feel free to reach out to me, anytime!