Managing Your Stress and Mental Health Through the COVID-19 Pandemic

As we continue with Mental Health Awareness Month, I wanted to share some helpful information regarding owning your feelings and dealing with stress. While some people may have adjusted ok to our new normal, many people are struggling with juggling everything on their plate. It is important to understand and acknowledge your feelings as well as to understand when you are under too much stress. There are many harmful side effects to stress and with everything going on right now it is understandable that many of us are dealing with increased stress levels. Some of the ways I personally deal with stress are: keeping the same schedule that I had pre-COVID, I make sure to get up and move and exercise each day and I use an app for meditation nightly.  

Are You Too Stressed?

Your stress reaction can boost your performance and get you through a crisis. But too much stress can lead to serious problems. If you're concerned about your well-being, take a look at the symptoms of stress overload: 

  • fatigue
  • headaches
  • loss of concentration
  • difficulty making decisions
  • inability to control anger
  • increased use of alcohol, caffeine, cigarettes or drugs
  • increased or decreased eating
  • feeling overwhelmed
  • thinking often about what you need to do

Stress that goes unchecked can lead to serious mental health problems, like depression and anxiety disorders. Stress may also contribute to:

  • high blood pressure
  • heart disease and stroke
  • decreased immune defenses
  • cancer
  • stomach problems
  • poorer brain functioning

While you can't necessarily remove all sources of stress you can figure out ways to cope better with whatever comes your way. There are decades worth of research out there that can suggest which strategies are most likely to work. 

Additional Info:

If you are feeling overwhelmed and need to reach out there are resources available:

>>> Mental Health and Information Center (referral and resource line)

>>> NYS Office of Mental Health Hotline: 1-844-863-9314 

Be well.

About the Author

Denise Anderson, Human Resources Operations at Alaant

Denise Anderson, Manager, Talent & Human Resource Operations

Denise loves helping people and organizations find their perfect fit —whether that is helping someone find a dream job or scoping out what role a company needs to fill and finding the right person for them. In her spare time, she likes to keep physically active and this year has competed in two sprint triathlons. Denise has 2 teenagers and has logged many miles over the years following them around the country to watch them compete in their sports events. When she is able to be at home on the weekends, she enjoys being on her boat, especially during the summer.