Here in Australia, we have been doing a fabulous job of social distancing to help save lives and keep under the curve. It has, unfortunately, caused a little uncertainty and anxiety for some because we find ourselves disconnected from work colleagues, friends and family.
At times like this, it is a very real possibility that you could be experiencing a level of social and disconnect anxiety.
There are many ways anxiety may present itself and it will be different for everybody. Below are just some of the ways you may experience social and disconnect anxiety, along with some tips on how to change your focus and move towards more resourceful thinking.
Does your attention lean towards “self-focus” where your inner thoughts have you believing that others are or will judge you negatively?
Your self-talk and inner thoughts may have you thinking things like, what you must look like to others, what they must be thinking about you or possibly have you trying to work out what every gesture or facial expression they make means and how it relates to you?
It is a bit like looking at your world including your social media and online interactions with others through distorted lenses. You see, it is the deep-down beliefs you have about yourself that are influencing and distorting your thoughts of what you think other people will be thinking of you. This distortion has you all out of alignment with your thoughts, feelings and actions.
If this is a challenge that you are currently experiencing, here are a few self-help and positive practices to break from this vicious cycle. For example, give yourself a moment to pause – consider using 2-3 deep inhales of Alleviating Crystal Smelling Salts™. This will help you focus on your breathing. You may also want to try a micro meditation. Once you have taken this time for yourself, it will be easier to challenge the distorted feelings and thinking, and allow you to reframe and align yourself.
Are you becoming a sort of mind-reader and imagining you can correctly assume what others are thinking? Are you focusing on others unspoken gestures or glances and interpreting them as to what they mean in relation to you?
When we let unresourceful thinking take over our minds, we tend to believe we know exactly what everyone is thinking and how it will directly impact us. However, this simply isn’t true.
Have you ever seen the quote “Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about”? While it is easy to make assumptions, we must remember that people have their own struggles that they are managing day-to-day. Their thoughts are rarely focused on you and absolutely focused on themselves.
In these times of social isolation and uncertainty, it is more important than ever that we look inwards and challenge our unhelpful thoughts. Once you learn to challenge this behaviour, your mind will clear and allow you to refocus and turn your attention to more resourceful thinking.
Consider creating a schedule for your days at home and making it a habit. When what you need to do is structured and you get into the habit of doing it, it is much easier to remain focused, productive and positive.
For example, before you start your work for the day, try taking these three important steps:
- Write your to-do list!
- Once you have written your list, highlight the three most important things that MUST be done before the day is out. Now you have your priorities.
- Schedule your day in your diary or online calendar. Once you have prioritised, you’ll have an idea of how much time each task might take. Now you can schedule your time and know exactly what you need to do and when.
Suddenly there’s no time for unresourceful thinking. You simply have to get on with the job. Incorporating some time into the schedule that is just for YOU is also important. Whether it be a walk around the block, an online yoga session or a foot spa and face mask, make sure you give yourself a break and take the time to renew and refresh.
Why not book an appointment with a Life Coach who will assist you to find authentic new possibilities by aligning your emotional and logical thoughts and feelings and help you find more productive ways to manage challenges such as what we are facing today. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about how I can help.