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12/26/2019 / By Arsenio Toledo
Facing a crisis is a fact of life – be it a medical emergency, a sudden change in your financial circumstances or some other kind of catastrophe. One thing that makes them all similar is the fact that every crisis takes a toll on your mental health. How strongly you respond to this turbulent time in your life can be the key to getting through it. Here are 11 things you can do to maintain your mental composure. (h/t to PsychologyToday.com)
You’re going through a crisis, which isn’t the time to worry about building up your mental strength. Take what strength you already have and put it to good use.
In a crisis, there’s no time to be in denial. You have to accept that this is your current situation. This doesn’t mean you agree with what’s going on, it just means you’re acknowledging reality and understanding that things need to move forward from this point.
During this time, your memory might fail you due to your heightened stress levels. Make a to-do list and prioritize what needs your attention the most such as family and work. Do the important stuff right away before your mental strength slips.
Your negative thoughts can take you into a downward spiral. To avoid this, create a positive, affirming mantra, like “I believe I can get through this” and repeat it to yourself as much as you need. This mantra can silence your negative thoughts and keep you focused.
Talk to loved ones, trusted friends and perhaps even a professional counselor. Go to them for all the help you may need. Emotional support is important. Nobody should have to weather a crisis alone.
A crisis can be overwhelming, and when faced with a difficult task it can make you give up completely. Consider starting impossible jobs slowly. Break it down into tiny chunks that you can handle one at a time. Identify what you can work on right away and do it.
Like impossible tasks, crises may require you to make difficult decisions. Your emotional state may cloud your ability to make the right choices. To resolve this, ask yourself what advice you would give if your friend was going through your crisis. This mental exercise helps clear your mind by taking out the emotion in the decision-making process.
You still need to look after yourself during a crisis. Your body needs just as much attention as your mind. Take a nap and eat a healthy meal. Even when you’re pressed for time, your body and your mind need to relax.
There will be times when you need to set aside your emotions so you can remain productive. Your crisis may even require that you move forward quickly, taking away any time you may have to process your emotions. That’s acceptable during intense situations. However, when your load begins to lighten, you need to let yourself experience whatever you’re feeling. This is a crucial step in healing emotional scarring.
During your crisis you might feel like there’s nothing but chaos in the world. To counteract this, restore a semblance of order in your life. You can do this by doing an activity that helps you feel normal. Take your dog out for a walk and spend some time playing with him. Phone a friend and ask them how they’re doing. Whatever the activity, look for and build a sense of normalcy. This can help you feel like your life can go back to normal once this crisis has ended.
Take some time for yourself to de-stress once you’ve dealt with your situation. Whether it’s going for counseling or taking a vacation, make sure that this time for yourself can help you move forward. Take whatever steps you need to help you not just move on from this experience, but also learn from it.
When you weather a crisis, your mind needs just as much attention as your body. Feed it good thoughts, practice self-care, and learn how to deal with impossible tasks. Do these things and you may get through the next crisis in far better shape.
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