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Managing uncertainty

Updated: Nov 9, 2020

As human beings, we are hard-wired to want certainty – to know what is happening and what feels threatening or scary in order to be prepared for what’s to come. Living with uncertainty can leave us experiencing increased stress levels.

Currently, Coronavirus has created a lot of uncertainty in the world and there is a constant stream of media information which can be overwhelming and conflicting.

A large part of stress and anxiety often stems from what we think we should be able to control, but can’t. Right now, a lot of people are feeling unsure on what is within their control with regards to the Coronavirus. This uncertainty can also touch on other aspects of our lives past or present when the future was uncertain. Daily, familiar routines may also be disrupted at this time.

Uncertainty, particularly prolonged uncertainty, can impact on our mental health. It’s not always so obvious that it’s happening or connected to current circumstances.

You might notice that you are:

  • More frustrated than usual     

  • Avoidant of reminders of what is happening

  • Not able to switch off from news updates and reminders of what is happening       

  • Changes to sleep and appetite       

  • Feeling anger, guilt, worry, etc.       

  • Increasing use of alcohol and other drugs Having difficulty concentrating    

  • Exacerbated mental health challenges

What can I do?

It is important to remember that there are actions which can be taken to protect ourselves physically and mentally:

1. What is within your control?

  • Washing your hands well after being in public, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing or using the bathroom;

  • Take vitamins as appropriate;

  • Limit time spent reading or watching

  • news updates;

  • Phone family or a friend for a chat – stay socially connected

  • Do something relaxing

2.  Maintain a balance:

  • This will look different for everyone – isolate where you feel comfortable to do so and also try to achieve enough social contact through the phone and internet and physical activity for your mental wellbeing.

3. Spend some time outside in the fresh air and sunshine

4.  Reach out if you need additional support

If you’re struggling with your mental health or having other issues, CWC QLD has a great team of psychologists who are passionate about helping individuals.

If you feel you need assistance, please contact us

Telehealth services are available.

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