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5 Ways To Cope During The COVID-19 Crisis

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Western chapter.

Let’s be honest, right now is a really scary and stressful time for everyone. To date, 785, 712 people around the world have been diagnosed with the coronavirus or COVID-19. Even if you, your family or  friends have not been diagnosed with the virus, you are most likely still affected by the virus in other ways. Whether you’re struggling with getting laid off from your job, having to finish the semester online and/or having to live in isolation, it is easy to feel scared and like you’re losing control. So, here are five tips to cope during the COVID-19 crisis. 

1. Make a schedule 

While some people can easily work from home and take courses online, some people would rather be on campus or at a coffee shop studying. As this is sadly no longer possible since everything except essential services are closed, it can be a lot easier to procrastinate and put off doing work. Make the best of a bad situation and make yourself a schedule.  Some of the benefits of making a schedule include helping fight unhealthy habits, reducing  stress, making you feel more accomplished and letting you spend time on things that really matter. 

If you haven’t made a schedule before, a useful way to do it is to break down your time into different chunks and decide when you’re doing  what. For example, maybe from 9 AM to 12 PM, you’ll work on your biology course, 12 PM to 1 PM you’ll have lunch, 1 PM to 5 PM you’ll work on your psychology course, 5 PM to 6 PM you’ll have dinner and then you can reward yourself by relaxing for the rest of the night. Whether you write your schedule down or download an app like Google calendar, make sure you hold yourself accountable. If you say you’re going to work on psychology from 1 PM to 5 PM, then do it, instead of  spending that time watching Tik Tok videos. 

2. Reach out for support

While important, self-isolation can be lonely. Whether you’re alone in London and missing your family or at home with your family and  missing your friends, reach out! Whether you just send a text to check in on a friend or FaceTime your mom, reaching out can help you deal with intense feelings and emotions, making you feel safe and supported.  If you want to have fun with your friends while quarantined, there are lots of ways to do it, like playing Cards Against Humanity online or streaming Netflix together even when you’re apart. If reaching out to family and friends doesn’t feel like enough and you need professional help, feel free to call Good2Talk at 1-866-925-5454 or Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868. 

3. Watch something funny

Whether you go on Facebook, Tik Tok or almost any news website, it feels like everyone’s talking about COVID-19 and it’s pretty hard to escape it. While it’s important to stay updated, sometimes it can be nice to take a break from it all and have a good laugh.  A few benefits of laughing are that it can help relieve stress and pain, boost your immune system and sharpen the mind. If you’re looking for something funny to watch, just some of my favourite comedies include shows like Brooklyn 99, The Good Place, On my Block, Jane the Virgin and One Day at a Time, movies like Crazy Stupid Love and Life of the Party, and comedy specials like Taylor Tomlinson: Quarter-Life Crisis special and all of Ali Wong and Illiza Shlesinger’s specials. 

4. Do something you enjoy

During the school year, life often gets so busy with tests, assignments and extracurricular activities, that hobbies and things you enjoy doing often get put on hold . So now that you have more free time in self-isolation and your busy life has slowed down drastically, take up an activity that you love doing. A hobby can encourage you to take a break, reduce your stress, provide you with a new challenge, explore your talents and interests, and even help you with your career or provide you with a source of income.  Whether it’s knitting, baking, reading, blogging, playing an instrument or something else, get back into it. Don’t have a hobby? Try one out!  

5. Practice gratitude 

In times like this, it is really easy to feel angry, scared and confused. Even though you cannot change COVID-19 and control how it affects your school, work, activities and family, you can control how you react to it. While things are hard right now, practicing gratitude can improve your physical and mental health, increase empathy, reduce aggression and improve your relationships. So while classes are online, you may have been laid off and you have to stay inside, take some time to be grateful for your health, safety and relationships. Also, take a moment to appreciate the people who put their lives on their line every day as health care workers, grocery store cashiers and bus drivers. 

The bottom line 

The coronavirus has such a big impact around the world and it can be frustrating and scary with having to adjust to a new way of life. With these five tips, hopefully, it will be a little bit easier to cope and manage during this stressful time. Hang in there, a cure will eventually be found and everything will be okay. 

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Anika is the President of Her Campus Western. She is a fourth-year student studying media and creative writing at Western University and would love to work as an advertising copywriter after graduation. When she's not doing Her Campus things, you can find her baking, watching movies and shows, playing video games, and hanging out with friends.
Shauna Ruby Valchuk is HCW's 2019-20 Editor-in-Chief. She's in her fifth year studying Creative Writing, English, Language and Literature. Currently, she is working on her creative non-fiction thesis. She writes in her off days and publishes it on her on days and hopes to one day make money doing the stuff she loves surrounded by as many cats as legally allowed.