It’s All About Balance

How do we balance the need to stay informed in order to safeguard our physical health with the important priority of protecting our emotional well-being?

Research suggests that news exposure causes stress for more than half of Americans. Now, with emotional distress heightened due to the pandemic, many may benefit from limiting news exposure in the following ways:

  • 1. Choosing 1 or 2 trusted sources;
  • 2. Setting a time boundary – such as 10 minutes per day – and using a timer to stick to it;
  • 3. Electing to read news as opposed to watching video reports;
  • 4. Avoiding stories and images explicitly portraying human suffering.  After 9/11/2001, many people developed symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder from watching news reports

If you are having difficulty managing stress related to the pandemic, the National Center for PTSD recommends focusing on five areas of coping:

  • 1. Increasing your sense of safety
  • 2. Staying connected to others
  • 3. Cultivating ways to be more calm
  • 4. Improving your sense of control and ability to endure
  • 5. Remaining hopeful

Helpful Links:

(1) https://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2017/11/lowest-point

(2) https://www.psychiatry.org/newsroom/news-releases/new-poll-covid-19-impacting-mental-well-being-americans-feeling-anxious-especially-for-loved-ones-older-adults-are-less-anxious

(3) https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/here-there-and-everywhere/201109/the-case-against-watching-911-tv-coverage

(4) https://www.ptsd.va.gov/covid/COVID_managing_stress.asp