As Covid 19 and the restrictions on our lifestyle take hold, the likelihood is that the levels of anxiety, stress and worry will increase. In ordinary circumstances, the feeling of being anxious and worried can be isolating, people can feel lonely and disconnected from their families, friends and social networks. My worry is that enforced and prolonged periods of social isolation will compound these feelings for a lot of people, who may not know how to help themselves or those around them. 
At SanaMente, we specialise in managing anxiety, distress, overwhelm and we are keen to continue to support people as much as we can. With that in mind we are arranging to provide a FREE weekly online gathering to help you with some tops tips and strategies to help you manage your thoughts, feelings and behaviours in a positive way. This will include a guided relaxation session and an opportunity to help us shape future sessions. Our first session will take place on Tuesday 24th March at 10am. We are hoping to be able to record this (if the technology allows us). Contact us on [email protected] if you wish to attend. 
As human beings we thrive on social contact. The glue that holds us together is compassion. Our ability to care for each other, understand and respond to the unique challenges we each face and to exercise protective measures, to not only keep ourselves and those we love safe, but our wider communities. 
As the period of isolation, worry and loneliness creeps in over the coming weeks and months, it may become more difficult to exercise that compassion to ourselves and those around us. Anxiety has the power to rob us of sensible and balanced thought, often dragging us down a road of catastrophe and drama. 
It’s important that we take the time to stay focused on our emotional health and resilience. These restrictions are set to be a marathon not a sprint. There are lots of forums and plans emerging in relation to community assistance, so I’m not going to mention those today – these initiatives are great and if you can get involved please do. 
My aim today is to provide you with some practical, handy hints and tips to help you look after your emotional health during this challenging time. The list is not exhaustive, but hopefully gives you some ideas: 
Think about how you can stay socially connected. Whilst social media is great for this, I am going to suggest that you look for ways to converse with people either by telephone or videocall. The power of the interaction cannot be underestimated. 
Pay attention to your basic health needs, eat well, drink plenty of water and plan to sleep well. There is a relationship between inactivity and sleep, the less active you are the less inclined you feel to be active and because of this you may end up not sleeping as well. 
Try to stay active, move as much as you can. Perhaps enjoy time in the garden, take things upstairs one at a time. Check out online at home exercise workouts. 
Practice some mindfulness, meditation or self hypnosis. It’s impossible to be relaxed and anxious at the same time so this will help. 
Think about what you can do to help others. 
Make a list every day of what you want to achieve. 
Try to train your inner voice to focus on what you want to happen, not what you fear might. Stay in the moment. 
Know deep down this situation is temporary. 
I hope you find this a wee bit helpful. SanaMente are trying to remain available to help people as long as we can, currently we are providing a face to face service either in person [following the government guidance] or via Zoom. 
Should you find yourself feeling overwhelmed and anxious please don’t hesitate to contact us, we are very happy to help. 
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