Many are feeling a sense of “COVID fatigue” – pure exhaustion from the pandemic. With so much daily uncertainty and harsh reality on the news, we are growing more stressed with little room to do the coping activities we are accustomed to doing. In addition, we’ve become increasingly tired of taking precautions, distancing, isolating, etc. For someone with cancer, these added steps and feelings of uncertainty may not be unfamiliar, but it does not mean they aren’t any less fatiguing or stressful. Thus, it’s just as important, if not more so, for someone with an added health risk like cancer to take care of their mental well-being during this time.
An article in UC Davis Health recommends ways to cope with COVID-fatigue, summarized below:
- Exercise if you can. Releasing endorphins and getting adrenaline out can help release frustration, even if it’s a short walk.
- Talk about your feelings. Ignoring them won’t make them go away so find someone you can talk to.
- Adjust your thinking to be constructive. We can’t change the situation but we can adjust the way we react so be compassionate with yourself and others.
- Practice mindfulness and gratitude. Try being in the moment by not projecting too much into the future or thinking too much about the past.
- Take control by following the health guidelines, and positively reinforce others who are doing the same by thanking them. Instead of thinking about all those who aren’t wearing masks, think about all those who are.
Read more about mindfulness as a coping strategy here.
For additional ways to manage stress, view our Managing Long-Term Stress webinar from our Balancing Work & Cancer Webinar Series.