We’d like to shed some light on the topic of lockdown anxiety, autostress, and the simple things we can do to calm the mind and feel more content. It is an unusual time after all. Now, we are always on the lookout for new resources to help our readers. We were recently shared the Coronavirus Anxiety Workbook provided by the The Wellness Society. Their mission is “to stop over medicalising mental health and to focus on creating high quality, concise self-help tools”. We couldn’t agree more!
What is autostress?
The guide introduces the concept of “autostress”. This term describes what happens when the body experiences stress for a long time. Autostress transforms our stress response system into something that attacks itself instead of protecting it. If the body is in autostress mode, it experiences a wide range of physical stress symptoms on an ongoing basis. For example, if one suffers from high levels of distress triggered by the pandemic, you might continue to feel this way even after the virus has long passed.
One cannot stop autostress or anxiety from occurring. It is the brain’s survival mechanism in action. What matters is learning how to respond to anxiety in a positive way, so you do not get carried away by it. We’ve put together some top tips to manage lockdown anxiety and autostress for you:
1. Plan an information diet
We are programmed to fixate on threat, uncertainty and negativity. Unfortunately, the media knows this and they capitalize on it by reporting on negatively biased and speculative news. This acts as fuel for people with anxious minds. That’s why we suggest sticking to credible news sources that have trust and only check once per day. Also, balance out your information diet with uplifting news. At GreenBox, we are focused on only the uplifting!
2. Don’t worry about what you can’t control
Secondly, if you are prone to constant worrying (i.e. “what if” thoughts), you may find it helpful to practice noticing these thoughts. Then, make special effort to redirect your attention to things within your control. Things such as:
- Building resilience
- My information diet
- My routine
- Cultivating connection
- Eating well
3. Add calming plant extracts to your wellness routine
Many people take vitamins and minerals to support health and immunity, as part of a daily wellness routine. We think mental wellbeing deserves at least the same treatment. CBD is one such plant extract that has some promising calming properties. Many therefore opt to add a CBD oil to the wellness routine to support mental wellbeing and calm. At GreenBox we think this is a convenient and effective solution to supporting a healthy mind.
4. Distract yourself
Low activity and social disconnection are the two most important factors for low mood, motivation, and energy. Activities that distract the mind have the added benefit of helping you feel happier, more motivated, and more energised. They also combat feelings of boredom. It is important to note that a distraction activity must be very attention absorbing to effectively reduce anxiety. We have some suggestions for you:
- Plan your meals (a CBD smoothie perhaps?)
- Learn how to play a musical instrument (we are trying to learn guitar yet again)
- Make a list of books you would like to read
- Have a spring clean
The possibilities are endless.
These are difficult times and sometimes we are our own worst enemy. Just remember, we are all in this together. And it’s unlikely you’re the only one feeling this way! We hope our top tips help calm the mind and help our readers relax. As always, we are on call to help with anything.