Stress, worry and anxiety in uncertain times

Difficult events or life changes circumstances can often cause us worry, anxiety or stress. This is a normal response to difficult situations, we are creatures of habit when things go to plan we feel in control and safe. When things change, go wrong or when there is great uncertainty about the future we start to feel out of control or unsafe. This is when anxiety, worry and stress can creep in.

Stress is how we all feel when we are under pressure. It’s not an illness, it’s our body’s normal reaction to feeling under threat; the ‘fight or flight’ response.

A certain amount of pressure can be helpful and motivating, however sustained stress can be really bad for our health.

If you start to feel like this there are things you can do to help. You can:

  • follow our five ways to wellbeing
  • be kind to yourself – you are an individual so how you deal with things may be different to the way others do
  • be patient with yourself – try not to give yourself a hard time, you are allowed to feel how you feel
  • reflect on past successes – you have over come stressful events in the past, and you made it! Give yourself credit for how you overcame this and think about what helped and what you might do differently
  • limit your exposure to the news and social media – it’s easy to get caught up in checking for new information every minute of the day but it’s often unhelpful and can lead to more stress when the news is not positive or when there is continued uncertainty
  • avoid dwelling on things you can’t control – take control of things you can affect and know the difference. Don’t jump straight to the worse case scenario, things often turn out better than you hoped for
  • ask for help – talk to friend, family, workmates. Use the online, telephone and digital services available to support mental health and wellbeing. Don’t be afraid to reach out, we are all having an uncertain time but people are there to support you.