Reflecting on all the craziness we have seen so far in 2020, I think most of us would agree that the first week of November might take the cake as the most stressful yet. Between voting in what has been considered one of the most intense elections, Daylight Savings time, a rise in COVID-19 cases nationwide, and abnormal New England weather (snow in October and then a week of days in the high 70s?? Can someone please explain?!) this past week and a half has left me absolutely drained. After taking time to try to get my head back on straight, I have come up with a list of things that you can do to try not to get overwhelmed with everything going on in the world right now.
Read a book
There’s nothing like a good book to help you escape reality for a couple of hours. Being stuck inside due to the pandemic and the (occasional) cold weather, it can be hard not to get sucked into the toxicity that is social media. A great way to try to avoid that toxicity is to find a book that interests you to help pass the time you would otherwise spend on your phone. There is also the positive benefit of not looking at a screen, which should help reduce headaches and help you sleep better at night (two things that I personally have been struggling with recently).
Binge some Netflix
Sometimes you truly don’t even have enough energy to do anything that requires brain power. If that’s the case, I would recommend heading on over to good ol’ Netflix to binge watch a good show. Bonus points if you decide to re-watch an old favorite. Some of my favorites are Gossip Girl, the Vampire Diaries, Schitt’s Creek, and American Horror Story, to name a few.
Try to get outside
At least get some fresh air. Anytime I get stressed, heading to the beach and listening to the sound of the waves and smelling the salty air is like pressing a reset button in my head, releasing me of all of the stress and forcing me to stay present in the moment. Living in New Hampshire we’re all lucky enough surrounded by lots of beautiful nature, so try to take a minute to head outside and take a deep breath of fall air. You don’t need to go on a hike or do anything extreme, you can just take your book (bonus points again!) outside and lay under a nice tree.
There are going to be many different stress-relieving methods that work for many different people. Usually, they’re easier said than done. People always recommend journaling, but sometimes it’s too stressful to even do that. Just trying to do even one of these things can help you feel a little less-over-whelmed by the world we live in.