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Focusing Tip #696 – “How do I manage my feelings during this health crisis?”

Focusing Tip #696 – “How do I manage my feelings during this health crisis?”
March 18, 2020 Ann Weiser Cornell
“How do I manage my feelings during this health crisis?”

Focusing Tip #696 – “How do I manage my feelings during this health crisis?”

Is there something that can help when we feel anxious and powerless about what’s going on in the world? Read on…


Many People are Asking:

I have a constant feeling of anxiety and dread. There are so many things I am worried about.

How do I manage my feelings during this health crisis? Is there any way to feel calmer and/or to care for myself emotionally? We don’t even know how long this is going to go on.

Dear Readers:

Me too! I share the feelings and worries… and I am happy to also share with you any tips I have about how to manage your responses to this challenging time.

It helps me to remember that my feelings are not solely caused by the crisis. I am not a helpless victim.

I can’t choose how to feel… but I can choose how to be with how I feel.

(1) Awareness is good. I notice that I am actually not scared all the time.

The scared feeling in my stomach comes and goes. I notice what brings it on — watching TV news — and what helps it feel better — talking with friends. I can do less of one and more of the other.

(2) When my body calls for attention (usually with a clenched stomach) I pause and listen.

I put a gentle hand there. (I am in a “stay-at-home” area so it is easy to have time to pause!) I use the language “something in me feels scared” even if it feels like all of me. And this helps.

(3) I listen.

The scared place in me is scared for good reason. But if I assume I already know its reasons, I am missing a great opportunity.

This morning I did this. I woke up with a scared stomach. I said Hello very kindly to the “something in me” that was scared.

Then I asked it: “What are you most reacting to? What are you most scared about?” And I waited. (My head could have supplied many answers, but I just waited.)

In a few moments, here is what came from inside: It’s the feeling of something worse on its way.

So I acknowledged it. I let it know I heard it. And slowly my stomach began to relax. It is relaxed now, two hours later.

When you hear what needs to be heard, it matters. Don’t assume you already know.

Listen!

And may you be safe and well.

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