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Covid-19 Update

Due to the most recent government advice, Lifeways will be closed from Tuesday 24th March until further notice. We will be answering queries over email info@lifewaystherapycentre.com

If you have any queries regarding arrangements with an individual therapist, please contact them directly. If you are seeking counselling, many of our therapists are continuing talking therapies by phone or through online appointments and so may be able to help you.

A lot of us are scared, confused and unsure what the future holds. It is normal to feel anxious, it is normal to feel angry, emotional and irrational.

Some of us will come out of this better than others. We will mostly all come out the other side, so let’s use this time to reflect and grow stronger for when we are able to once again, hug family and friends, socialise in pubs and restaurants, have friends round for dinner, travel and all those other wonderful things we just a few weeks ago took for granted.

We need to take care of ourselves now whilst self-isolating, in order to be strong when we are able to come back together as a society.

The effects of anxiety on the body

Anxiety is a normal part of life. For example, you may have felt anxiety before addressing a group or in a job interview.

In the short term, anxiety increases your breathing and heart rate, concentrating blood flow to your brain, where you need it. This very physical response is preparing you to face an intense situation.

If it gets too intense, however, you might start to feel lightheaded and nauseous. An excessive or persistent state of anxiety can have a devastating effect on your physical and mental health.

Stressful life experiences may increase your risk for an anxiety disorder, too.

Long-term anxiety and panic attacks can cause your brain to release stress hormones on a regular basis. This can increase the frequency of symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, and depression.

When you feel anxious and stressed, your brain floods your nervous system with hormones and chemicals designed to help you respond to a threat. Adrenaline and cortisol are two examples.

While helpful for the occasional high-stress event, long-term exposure to stress hormones can be more harmful to your physical health in the long run. For example, long-term exposure to cortisol can contribute to weight gain.

How can I manage my anxiety?

  1. Continue with a self-care routine, get out in natural daylight as much as possible. Get 30 minutes daily exercise
  2. Read a book
  3. Connect with a pastime you have not been able to do recently, due to lack of time
  4. Create a mood board or journal
  5. Connect with a family member or friend each day by video or phone
  6. Practise mindfulness
  7. Start one new thing you will continue in the coming year

Remember it is only a short period of time in comparison to those who went to war for us. I saw a lovely quote, “Our grandparents were asked to go to war, we are only being asked to stay at home”. This for me does put it into perspective. If we take care of ourselves, both physically and mentally, the majority of us will be ok. Make new experiences in these times of uncertainty and create new and beautiful memories. 

We all have choices - whatever you choose to do, please stay safe.

Diane Pulley is a counsellor, psychotherapist and life coach with Tlc Partners. She works with individuals and groups supporting them with issues including anxiety, trauma, depression, stress, self-esteem, anger management and assertiveness. She is continuing to take on new clients through online and phone appointments during the current Covid 19 situation.

 

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