How To Manage Worry And Fear In Trying Times

Experiencing worry and fear in today's unsettling world is perfectly normal.
Experiencing worry is normal.
Experiencing worry is normal.
CAMARILLO, Calif. - Nov. 11, 2020 - PRLog -- Experiencing worry and fear in today's unsettling world is perfectly normal, says Dr. Noelle Nelson, psychologist, author and host of the Up! Uplifting, Inspiring, Practical podcast. How you respond to these emotions is what is important to your wellbeing.

"COVID, continuing business closures, high unemployment, racial and social inequities, political anxiety--it's almost impossible to go a day without some negative thoughts," says Nelson.

A Gallup Poll ( conducted in March and April found that the percentages of U.S. adults experiencing significant stress each day stands at 60 percent, up 15 percent from a year ago.

"We can't magically transform the present conditions into sweetness and light nor should we bury our heads in the sand," says Nelson. "But we can adopt a few simple techniques that will lift us out of our negative emotional state enough so that we do not inadvertently harm our long-term physical and mental well-being."

Make A List. In a column, write down what causes you anxiety at the moment. Getting worries and fears out of our minds and onto paper/computer is the first step to addressing them.

Do a Reality-Check. Next, across from each worry and fear, write what you've done or can do to help allay them. For COVID, that could mean being vigilant about wearing a mask, keeping socially distanced and washing your hands. If laid off, it might be immediately applying for unemployment, looking into what jobs are available and what skills are needed to help be successful.

Follow Through. Few things are better antidotes to worry and fear than taking steps to tackle them head-on. Loss of control is one of the hardest side effects of the pandemic. Any time you can take charge in your life, it helps re-establish a sense of control.

Cultivate Mindfulness. So much of our worry and fear is future based. Mindfulness is staying completely in the present moment with all your senses. For example, really tasting your morning beverage, noticing the feel of the cup or glass in your hand. It can be really listening with your whole being to your loved one when they speak to you. Being mindful is noticing your own breathing, and deliberately relaxing into a slow inhale-exhale rhythm whenever fear attempts to hijack your thoughts.

Nelson believes these few simple techniques can serve as a useful "starter kit" to get you going on a more positive thought path no matter the circumstances.

Nelson's Up! Uplifting, Inspiring, Practical ( podcasts are released the first and third Tuesday of each month. You can hear them on Spotify, iTunes, Google Podcasts and on YouTube. For more on Nelson, go to

Diane Rumbaugh
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Tags:Coping With Stress
Location:Camarillo - California - United States
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