Code 4 Counseling

Stress Management During COVID-19

When you feel overwhelmed, move the finish line:

•If you are trying to juggle too many mental operations, it’s impossible to execute a good action plan
•Reduce the set of operations and you’ll relieve the load placed on your frontal cortex (the region of your brain responsible for planning and action).
•It isn’t about how much you do, just do SOMETHING that you are certain you can complete.
•The smaller the piece, the easier it is to accomplish and the faster your brain gets out of a state of overwhelm.
•Navy Seal Candidates: Hell Week (5 minutes at a time)
When you feel powerless, take action:
•Powerlessness stems from a perceived lack of control
•Dopamine enhances energy levels and is released as a reward for a job well done and in anticipation of completion of goals
•When you freeze, it impedes dopamine release which leads to a greater sense of powerlessness
•When you sense a loss of control, default to action: direct your attention to something that is within your reach
•Read a book to your kids
•Make a cup of coffee
•Text a friend
•Do a load of laundry
•Goal: shift your mindset from one of powerlessness to one of resolve
When you feel alone, support someone else:
•Supporting others rebalances the weight of attention to pay to our inner self to the world around us
•It also activates hardwired brain circuits that release feel-good brain chemicals such as oxytocin and serotonin and prevents the release of chemicals that impair immunity and promote fear.
•The more stressful the environment, the more Navy Seals focus on the needs of their team and teammates
•Phone, text, write a letter to someone; bake cookies and leave them at a neighbor’s door, etc. as the same effect as helping out a teammate