The rapid increase of weather events has left communities struggling with wildfires, hurricanes, tornado, 1000, and 500-year floods. All of this will make anyone anxious but if you are already dealing with ongoing anxiety this can be even more traumatic.
Prepare when Possible
Anxiety is often a locus of control issue. The rising up of the panic and increased anxiety when life is moving around you and you seem to have no power to manage your environment. In cases where there is notice, and for general practice having a weather event plan may help lessen anxiety. Discuss with all who live in your house where to meet up if people get separated. During storm season or wildfire season, storing all valuables in a fireproof, waterproof container may save considerable hassle. Prepare a plan for managing pets and people if evacuation is required. Keep a “survival kit” with water, candles, first aid and some provisions in case power is out for a bit. If you live in areas where power outages are common, consider a generator for critical items. Check with your rental or homeowner’s insurance agent to ensure you have coverage, it is a small investment that will allow replacement and a place to stay if necessary. You have the power to plan, to prepare and protect the people and pets you love with a bit of proactive behavior.
Anxiety comes on strongest when you cannot anticipate outcomes. It is never possible to manage weather events completely but not planning will increase panic and anxiety.
Talk to Someone
Managing anxiety can be an ongoing process, it can be impacted or reduced by talking to a Mental Health Professional with counseling expertise in the area of Anxiety. Talking through the triggers and expectations that elevate anxiety along with techniques for calming, centering and awareness of your surroundings can often be effective for managing the anxiety. Reach out to your counselor, your support system, or your friends when you feel triggered. Counseling can arm you with a set of techniques that you can employ anytime you are feeling triggered. An ongoing counseling relationship will allow for rapid response to on demand needs in times of crisis.
Stay Informed within Limits
Reliable knowledge can often reduce anxiety but over exposure can elevate anxiety or fire off triggers. Look for sources that can be confirmed, offer reliable and predictable information without too much drama. But when you feel comfortable that you are safely informed, up to date on changes in the situation then move to something else.
Self-Care and Healing
Eating healthy foods and exercise will help manage anxiety. It also works on managing the feeling that you are powerless, as you are taking control of what you do. Fresh air, whole foods and plenty of movement will brighten most perspectives.
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